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  by David B. Zwiefelhofer

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The trend towards “do it yourself,” as witnessed by the proliferation of home improvement stores, is well expressed in the home selling market. More and more homeowners are successfully selling their homes on their own and saving themselves, and their buyers, many thousands of dollars in sales commissions.

The biggest factor in driving this new trend is the Internet, or more specifically, the World Wide Web. The web has allowed home sellers to present their properties for sale on a pervasive and increasingly ubiquitous medium that's rapidly taking the middleman out of real estate sales.

Many people assume that they can easily sell their own house and save the six to seven percent commission a real estate broker would normally charge. Many are right and many are wrong. Those who are wrong generally have committed one or both of two cardinal home selling sins.

Over-pricing the property is the most common mistake in “For Sale By Owner” (FSBO) home selling (and it’s hardly uncommon in agent sales). Homeowners don’t fail to sell their homes because closing is too difficult or complicated. They don’t fail because they lack the connections of a real estate agent. They don’t fail because they lack real estate marketing savvy. They fail because they haven’t accurately measured the value of their homes and they don’t want to share the commission savings with potential buyers.

Okay, some fail because they assumed buyers would look past the peeling paint, clutter and general shabbiness of their property. No matter what you think, most buyers won’t be able to picture themselves living in your mess.
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