You'll get a better deal on your next house if you bypass Realtors and buy off-market.
That's going to be controversial with your Realtor friends, but I'm here to help you make more money to support your ministry, so I'm going to shoot straight with you.
Now, let me back up. I love Realtors - ha! I'm married to one! I also have a real estate license! My wife is actually a broker (a supervisor of Realtors) and we own a real estate brokerage where Realtors work. I even help those in ministry to become Realtors to make extra income. I'm not against Realtors - LOL!
I'm great with you becoming a Realtor, I'm just encouraging you not to use one to buy your house! Ha!
Realtors are very expensive. I mean, very. They usually get 6% of a transaction. You can do the math. It's a lot of money, especially on more expensive houses.
And when the Seller of a home is determining their list price, guess what they're factoring in? That 6%. Meaning, they'd sell for much less than that price if they didn't have to pay out 6% in commissions.
Now your Realtor friends will tell you that using a Realtor to buy a house is FREE because the Seller pays all the commissions. That's true, sort of. The commissions do usually come out of the Seller's side of the closing statement, but guess what the seller does to be able to afford the commissions? Raises the sales price for you to pay!
So, you can save quite a bit of money buying off-market. Buying off-market is often called For Sale by Owner or FSBO (pronounced "fiz-bo").
The last 4 homes that we've purchased for our family have been off-market. That was intentional. We're Realtors & yet even we try to avoid them when buying - haha! Don't be surprised when your Realtor friend tries to avoid Realtors on their personal transactions too! ;)
In the blog post, "You Make Your Money When You Buy," I talked about the importance of buying a home right so that when you go to sell it, you make the most money possible.
Whether you plan to live in your next house for 2 years, 5 years or 10 years, buying it right is SO important! It determines how much you make when you sell it down the road! And I want you to make as much as possible!
Ok, you get the point.
You're probably wondering, "How in the world do you find a property off-market, without using a Realtor?"
Here are the ways we bought our last 4 homes off-market & this will give you some ideas for the next time you're in the market to buy:
Home #1: We spent time each week driving through a neighborhood we really wanted to live in. One night while we were driving, we noticed that someone had just placed a For Sale By Owner sign in their yard. We contacted them, toured the house, made an offer, and bought it.
House #2: There was a house my wife had always loved in a particular neighborhood. She told me it was her dream house. I sent a Facebook message to the owner asking if he'd ever be interested in selling. He said, "You're not going to believe this, but we were just talking about it." Long story short, we bought the home a few months later.
House #3: My wife was driving around a neighborhood & stopping at houses she really liked. She'd get out of the car, walk to the door, and knock. When they answered, she'd say, "I love your house & our family is looking to move into the neighborhood. Have you ever thought about selling or do you know anyone else around here who is?" Well, on one occasion, she talked to a lady who wasn't interested in selling but said she knew someone around the corner who was. She gave us his phone number & we drove by the house. We loved it, so we called him & told him about the connection with his neighbor. He invited us by to see it and we bought it a few weeks later.
House #4: We were driving around a neighborhood that my wife really loved. We saw a For Rent sign in front of a really cute house. We called the number on the sign & asked if they'd be interested in selling instead of renting. Initially the owner said she wasn't interested. But she called us back a few days later & had changed her mind. We bought the house soon after.
And on each of these homes (with the exception of the one we live in now since we haven't sold it yet), when we went to sell, we made A LOT of money. Why? Because we bought the home off-market at a great price.
Always buy off-market if you can.
**I'll write more blogs in the coming days on how to comp properties, negotiate, put together contracts, etc. It's all much easier than you think!