Richard Stein – Realtor®, Douglas Elliman, GREEN, SFR, CBR, eCertified®

Local Agent, Worldwide Marketing – Douglas Elliman Real Estate formerly Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate

The Cost of Selling Without a Real Estate Agent

Hands grabbing $100 bills

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You’ve heard of buyer’s remorse; but without your market expertise and sales skills to back them up, sellers who choose to sell their home on their own just may experience “seller’s regret” when they see how much less they get for their properties. FSBOs earn an average of $60,000 to $90,000 less on the sale of their home than sellers who work with a real estate agent, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. Here’s the breakdown:

  • All agent-assisted homes: $250,000 (median selling price)
  • All FSBO homes: $190,000
  • FSBO homes when buyer knew seller: $160,300

With this kind of discrepancy, why would any seller choose to go it alone? Some may want to avoid paying an agent’s commission—but even factoring that in, FSBOs still stand to make less on their home sale. “Talk to an agent and find out what they suggest for the commission, and then do the math yourself,” researchers write on NAR’s Economists’ Outlook blog. “The closing price for the agent-assisted seller is likely going to be way above a FSBO. [But] in reality, homes sold by the owner make less money overall.”

Homeowners seem to be hearing the message: Only 8 percent of sellers last year—an all-time low—chose to sell their home themselves, according to NAR’s 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. That figure has been falling since 2004, when 14 percent of homeowners sold their own homes.

Of the share of FSBOs last year, 38 percent of the homes were sold to a buyer that the seller knew, such as a friend, neighbor, or family member. The majority of FSBO transactions, however, were sold to buyers the owner did not know.

Selling Your Home Solo to Save Money? You’ll Actually Make Less Than You Think,” National Association of REALTORS® Economists’ Outlook blog

720-Day Foreclosure Timeline Is Actually an Improvement

Foreclosure time

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Foreclosures can take a long time to process, but they are getting faster. Properties foreclosed in the second quarter took an average of 720 days from the first foreclosure notice to completion. That is down from 883 days a year ago, according to a new report released by ATTOM Data Solutions, a real estate data firm.

The states with the longest average timelines for foreclosures completed in the second quarter were:

  • Hawaii: 1,553 days
  • Florida: 1,166 days
  • New Jersey: 1,161 days
  • Utah: 1,108 days
  • Indiana: 1,054 days

For comparison, the states with the shortest average timelines for foreclosures completed in the second quarter were: Arkansas (152 days); Virginia (169 days); New Hampshire (177 days); Mississippi (188 days); and Minnesota (222 days).


4 Costly (and Dangerous) Pool Care Mistakes

Pool owner mistakes

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A pool can be a selling point for a home, but proper care is key. Some homeowners could be going about their pool maintenance all wrong, which could result in costly leaks or even skin irritations to those who jump in. An article at® recently highlighted some common slip-ups, including:

Using the wrong chemicals
Mixing the wrong chemical balance can cause eye and skin irritation and deteriorate the materials in the pool, which can lead to leaks. “The biggest mistake that pool owners make is not putting in the proper chemicals,” Craig Cohen, president of Treasure Pools & Service in West Palm Beach, Fla., told®. Experts urge owners to take a sample of their pool water to a local pool store—even on a monthly basis—for an analysis to determine which chemicals they’ll need to adjust.

Failing to clean the filters
Cohen suggests cleaning the filter once a month. He also recommends having two filters so the pool never goes without a clean one.

Only servicing the pool when it’s hot
A pool will likely need year-round service. A professional checkup in the spring, for example, will inspect the pool for pipe damage and tears in the pool liner to ensure there was no damage from the colder winter months. In the fall, owners will likely want to have their pool winterized, which means ensuring all the water has been removed from the pipes to avoid a breakage if the water freezes.

Not putting up a fence
Fences around a pool can be important to keep animals out of the water. Note that fences are likely mandated by the state. This can vary dependent on the area, but many local governments require a 4-foot fence around the pool.

Read more common pool mistakes at®.

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