While agents are required and responsible to provide accurate property records, exact and post factual data on their listings. Professional experienced real estate agents are very careful in how they answer questions or make promises because they are held to a higher standard that is enforced by any of the 3 or 4 real estate boards they may belong to as well at RECO the provincial licensing authority.
The FSBO sites are plentiful (and embellish their readership and success claims to help you part with your advertising dollars) and I even sponsor a dedicated space on one nationally based website to assist FSBO's marketing efforts, they cannot replace the realtor based MLS.ca (recently rebranded as REALTOR.ca) website when it comes t0 finding MOST the properties that are for sale. When looking thru a sampling of "available" listings for Listing Prospects, I realized that more than 95% has ultimately listed with a brokerage.
If the sites were that successful why was this ratio so high? This was for a sampling of 100 homes located in the Etobicoke, Mississauga west Toronto (GTA).
Yes, I will concede that NO ONE, knows the house better than the owner, but after that, is the owner as versed about the local employers, best mode of transit access, schools, community centers, local information and lore, community action groups, future planning developments and homes/neighbourhoods under construction, financing, special offers from LENDERS, home staging, candid advise about dressing your home for success and pricing your property correctly into the market based on SOLD competition. Who will hold the hand of the Buyers in the car for the next half hour driving thru the neighbourhood and pointing out the last sales and describing or showing the details from their neighbourhood comparible data.
After the concept of SAVE SAVE SAVE the commission, the Buyers who are skilled to buy a private listing are looking to ALSO save save save on the purchase price. Real Estate agents are negotiators; to bring parties together, fascilitors to encourage a transaction, hand holders to nervous buyers, rain makers to bring prospects to your listing, showcase and feature your property both online with IMPACT advertisings and Google search responses.
There was another thought that came to mind after reviewing many of the FSBO sites. The majority of SELLERS were selling the first house they had ever owned; often purchased new from the builder, in heavy traffic neighbourhoods for new construction. Once away from the high traffic areas for buyers its a much tougher road to attract prospects to see your home. In my 20 years of selling real estate and more importantly helping family's fulfill their housings needs, I have rarely come across a FSBO who has sold multiple times.
I merely ask a humble question, after you have sold your home privately, will you be using a REALTOR? The answer always surprises the owner in replying that they would be using an agent.
Mark Argentino articulated a point very well recently when he said "there are four people involved in your real estate transaction; the Seller, The Buyer, and usually two agents. It is inevitable that the person with the strongest arguments, best presented details, negotiation and persuasion skills will take the business to his side.
Having more unorganised FSBO websites with limited content does not detract from MLS.ca or RE/MAX.ca where your listings are prominantly displayed or showcased on my own websites. Your listing can have its own domain name such as the address, or merely a page that is pointed within the website. The result is the same, YOUR HOME is featured online to find a buyer, (regardless of their locale) showings occur and hopefully your home will go under contract.
If you are the Buyer I add a satisfaction guarantee.