How To List Your House For Sale


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How To List Your House For Sale (All Available Options)

 

Here are the 7 options to list your house for sale (that actually work!)

  1. Traditional Real Estate Agents
  2. Full Service Discount Agents
  3. Limited Service Discount Agents
  4. Flat Fee MLS Companies
  5. For Sale By Owner
  6. Social Media
  7. Listing Alternatives

 

We did the homework for you, in this article we breakdown 6 options for you to learn “how to list a house for sale” as well as 2 alternatives worth considering.

Spoiler Alert: Traditional Real Estate Agents are NOT the only option that work!

1) Traditional Real Estate Agents

 

Love them or hate them, it doesn’t really matter. Real estate agents are here to stay and are a major force in home selling process. The traditional real estate agent model is what is also referred to as “Full Service” agents. What this means is, they provide white glove concierge service to their clients who want to list their house for sale. They do all the leg work for the seller before, during and after the home is for sale, or at least they should be.

picture of a traditional real estate agent meeting with home sellers

Real estate listing services provided by traditional real estate agents

Listing For Sale Service Options Included
In-Home Listing Consultation Yes
Home Staging Consultation Yes
Professional Listing Photos Yes
Pricing Recommendations (CMA) Yes
MLS Listing Yes
Internet Real Estate Marketing Yes
Hosting Open Houses Yes
Negotiations & Contract Assistance Yes
Escrow Services Yes
Closing Assistance Yes

However, all of these listing services come at a price, this is also the most expensive option for a home seller. A traditional full service listing agent works for a commission, which is a percentage of the sale price and is typically 5-6%.

How To List Your House With A Traditional Real Estate Listing Agent

If you want to list your property for sale with a REALTOR®, you should find one that specializes in your local city/town or even neighborhood.

Here are 7 ways to find a traditional real estate broker to list your house for sale.

  1. Ask your neighbors for recommendations
  2. Research which agent recently sold properties in your neighborhood
  3. Search Google with “best real estate agent near me
  4. Ask friends and family for recommendations
  5. Ask the local Chamber of Commerce
  6. Look on the Better Business Bureau
  7. Utilize comparison platforms such as Homelight or Upnest.

When you are done doing your research, develop a short list of real estate agents that you want to interview. Then you should contact them to inquire about using their services and find out what their plan would be for listing your property for sale. After you find the right real estate agent for you, then an exclusive listing contract or agreement will have to be signed by you and the agent. This agreement will detail the terms that they will sell your house under and your obligations for compensation.

Remember, you can negotiate with the agent before you sign this agreement but not after, so make sure you understand and agree to the contract terms before you sign it.

Once signed up, the agent will get started on the process of listing your house for sale with their strategy.

Pros & Cons of Listing with a Traditional Real Estate Agent

Pros
  • Professional level of service
  • Local real estate expert
  • Professional marketing tools
  • Minimal impact on your busy schedule
  • Proven home selling plan
Cons
  • Costs a lot of money (commission)
  • Lack of control
  • Middleman
  • Bound to them by a contract
How Can I List My House Using ISoldMyHouse.com? Learn more

 

2) Full Service Discount Agents

 

The service level provided by real estate agents in this category are still full service, but the difference is they don’t charge the typical 5-6% commission rates that most brokers charge, instead they discount their commission to either a lower percentage or a flat fee.

The typical listing commission of 5-6% is usually divided between the listing agent and the buyers agent. A popular example of a full service discount agent’s commission is 1% for them and 2-3% for the buyers agent. Or a flat fee of $5000 for the listing agent and 2-3% for the buyers agent. A buyers agent fee usually is still a percentage and not a flat fee, although it is always negotiable, but results may vary depending on what commission level you offer to buyers agents.

picture of discount full service real estate agent

Real estate listing services provided by full service discount agents

Listing For Sale Service Options Included
In-Home Listing Consultation Yes
Home Staging Consultation Maybe
Professional Listing Photos Maybe
Pricing Recommendations (CMA) Yes
MLS Listing Yes
Internet Real Estate Marketing Yes
Hosting Open Houses Yes
Negotiations & Contract Assistance Yes
Escrow Services Yes
Closing Assistance Yes

The major difference in services offered between a traditional full service agent and a discount full service agent is some will not include all the marketing services such as home staging consultations or professional photos, which allows them to reduce their overhead to extend the discounted commission to you. They do still provide full service from a listing, negotiation, contract, escrow and closing perspective though.

How List a Property With a Full Service Discount REALTOR®

When listing your house for sale with a discount full service real estate agent, there will not be as many options for agents that focus in your specific neighborhood. They will specialize in a larger area such as a county or multiple counties. They cast a wider net in order to get more volume of clients.

Here are 7 ways to find a full service discount real estate broker to list your property for sale.

  1. Ask your neighbors for recommendations
  2. Research which discount agent recently sold properties in your county
  3. Search Google with “discount real estate agent near me
  4. Ask friends and family for recommendations
  5. Ask the local Chamber of Commerce
  6. Look on the Better Business Bureau
  7. Look at large discount companies such as Redfin or HomeBay

Once your research is complete, develop a short list of discount full service real estate agents that you want to interview and then contact them to inquire about using their services. Find out what their plan would be for listing your property for sale. They should be able to provide detailed information on their service, either on their website or with an in person consultation.

After you find the right full service discount real estate agent for you, then a listing contract or agreement will have to be signed by you and the agent. This real estate listing contract will detail the terms that they will sell your house with and your obligations for compensation. This is will be an exclusive listing agreement just like a traditional broker requires.

Remember, negotiating the listing agreement before signing is critical to make sure you are ok with the terms because once signed up, you are both contractually bound by the terms.

Once signed up, the discount agent will get started on the process of listing your house for sale with their strategy.

Pros & Cons of Listing with a Full Service Discount Real Estate Agent

Pros
  • Professional level of service
  • Regional real estate expert
  • Lower commission rates
  • Professional marketing tools
  • Minimal impact on your busy schedule
  • Proven home selling plan
Cons
  • Still costs more money then selling yourself
  • Lack of control
  • Middleman
  • Bound to them by a contract
How Can I List My Home Using ISoldMyHouse.com? Learn more

 

3) Limited Service Discount Agents

 

A limited service discount agent offers a subset of the home listing services that a full service agent offers. This program allows the responsibilities to be shared between the listing agent and homeowner. For example, a limited service agent would offer to list the house for sale and market the property online but have the homeowner host the open houses or coordinate showings. A lot of times they will handle negotiations or just provide paperwork/contract assistance and allow the homeowner to negotiate directly with buyers and buyer agents.

The cost of using these agents is typically a flat rate that might be paid up front, at closing or a combination. The fees normally charged are all over the place and depends on what services are included in their limited menu of listing for sale services. For example, one company could charge $1000 for their menu and another company could charge $3500 for their menu. That’s why it’s important to compare the options they are offering, so you can understand what they will charge you.

picture of Limited Service Discount Agents

Real estate listing services provided by limited service discount agents

Listing For Sale Service Options Included
In-Home Listing Consultation Maybe
Home Staging Consultation Maybe
Professional Listing Photos Maybe
Pricing Recommendations (CMA) Maybe
MLS Listing Yes
Internet Real Estate Marketing Yes
Hosting Open Houses Maybe
Negotiations & Contract Assistance Maybe
Escrow Services Maybe
Closing Assistance Maybe

This is a very flexible model and might work well for a home seller who wants the advantages of listing their property for sale with a real estate agent, but has the time to handle some of the selling tasks themselves and doesn’t have all the experience necessary to do everything on their own.

How To List a Home With a Limited Service Discount Agent

When listing your house for sale with a limited service discount real estate agent there will not be as many options of brokers that focus in your neighborhood or area. These brokers will specialize in providing service in larger area such as a multiple counties, the whole state or multiple states. They cast a much wider net in order to get higher volume of clients that want to use their listing services.

Here are 6 ways to find a limited service discount agent to list your property for sale.

  1. Ask your neighbors for recommendations
  2. Research which limited service agents recently sold properties in your county
  3. Search Google with “limited service real estate agent near me
  4. Ask friends and family for recommendations
  5. Ask the local Chamber of Commerce
  6. Look on the Better Business Bureau

Develop a short list of limited service discount agents that you want to interview and then contact them to inquire about using their services and their plan for listing your property for sale.

They should be able to provide detailed information on their service, either on their website or via phone consultation. Remember, they need to reduce the amount of services they provide, so they may not offer in-home consultations. Keep that in mind if that is important to you.

After you find the right limited service discount real estate agent that you want to work with, then a listing contract or agreement will have to be signed by you and the agent. This listing agreement will detail the terms that they will sell your house under and your obligations for compensation when a sale happens. This is will be an exclusive listing agreement just like a traditional and discount full service broker requires.

Remember, negotiating the listing agreement before signing is critical to make sure you are ok with the terms, because once signed up, you are both contractually bound by the terms.

Once the contract is signed, the limited service discount agent will get started on the process of listing your house for sale with their strategy.

Pros & Cons of Listing with a Limited Service Discount Agent

Pros
  • Professional level of service (for services they offer)
  • State level real estate professionals
  • Typically a flat rate fee
  • Professional marketing tools
Cons
  • Still costs more money then selling yourself
  • Limited control
  • Middleman
  • Bound to them by a contract
How Can I List My Home Using ISoldMyHouse.com? Learn more

 

4) Flat Fee MLS Companies

 

A flat fee mls company is not new, but not everyone knows about them or they have a misunderstanding about them. They are actually another form of limited service listings, but their menu of services typically only consists of listing your home on the MLS and internet real estate websites such as Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com and the other large and local real estate websites. Another popular term for this type of service is “Entry Only” listings because they are listing your house for sale only and all other selling obligations are on the home seller.

There is significant benefits and value to using this type of service, a home seller gets the same exposure for their home that they would when listing with a traditional real estate agent but they don’t have to pay a listing agent commission, the cost is a flat fee of only around $300-$500!

picture of a flat fee mls real estate company

Real estate listing services provided by flat fee MLS listing companies

Listing For Sale Service Options Included
In-Home Listing Consultation No
Home Staging Consultation No
Professional Listing Photos No
Pricing Recommendations (CMA) No
MLS Listing Yes
Internet Real Estate Marketing Yes
Scheduling Open Houses No
Negotiations & Contract Assistance No
Escrow Services No
Closing Assistance No

We mentioned the value that these companies provide because they are really a form of being a for sale by owner service that is combined with professional real estate marketing by listing on the MLS and online real estate websites. This listing service gives home sellers the most amount of control and these listing plans work extremely well for sellers who are savvy enough to do most of the work themselves. If you want more information on how to sell your house, here is a good guide.

Here Is How To List Your Property For Sale With Flat Fee MLS

  • Find the Best Flat Fee MLS Broker That Services Your Area
  • Purchase Your MLS Listing for a Flat Fee
  • Provide the Property Information
  • Upload the Photographs
  • Sign a Listing Agreement
  • House Will Then Get Posted to the MLS

Want To Learn More About Flat Fee MLS Listings?

If you want to save at least 50% of the REALTOR® commissions, check out our article about 9 Things FSBO’s Need To Know About Flat Fee MLS Listings

 

Please Note: We are a flat fee MLS listing company and we would love for you to choose to work with us as your listing provider. If you are interested in in learning more about our program check out our “How It Works” page.

 

Pros & Cons of Listing with a Flat Fee MLS company

Pros
  • Professional real estate marketing
  • State level real estate professionals
  • Low cost option (low flat fee)
  • Maximum control
  • Contract can be cancelled
  • Works much better that just FSBO
Cons
  • Slightly higher cost then selling FSBO
  • Takes more effort
  • Requires selling experience
How Can I List My Home Using ISoldMyHouse.com? Learn more
 

5) For Sale By Owner

 

Listing a house for sale by owner has long been the sought after option to save money on the high transaction cost of selling your house with a real estate agent. For a long time, real estate agents held control of the market before the internet introduced options for home sellers to directly market to the buyers.

Does listing your house for sale by owner work? Yes. Regardless of what real estate agents will tell you.

However, we feel strongly that being a true for sale by owner does put home sellers at a disadvantage by not being on the MLS or ALL the internet real estate websites. After all, when selling your house, you want maximum exposure and not limit yourself to a limited pool of buyers.

When you list your property for sale by owner, you do EVERYTHING yourself and you don’t get access to all the real estate marketing platforms such as the MLS, Realtor.com as well as local real estate websites that feed from the MLS.

picture of a house listed for sale by owner

Real estate listing services provided when selling FSBO

Listing For Sale Service Options Included
In-Home Listing Consultation No
Home Staging Consultation No
Professional Listing Photos No
Pricing Recommendations (CMA) No
MLS Listing No
Internet Real Estate Marketing No
Scheduling Open Houses No
Negotiations & Contract Assistance No
Escrow Services No
Closing Assistance No

If you are considering being for sale by owner, we recommend that you seriously consider a flat fee MLS listing or a discount real estate broker first.

But if you are convinced that being a “true” for sale by owner is for you, then keep reading.

How To List Your House For Sale By Owner

Because you are doing everything yourself as a FSBO, the listing options are limited. Zillow offers a way to list your house for sale by owner (see our guide here) and this does work in some markets, but keep in mind, it is really hard for a home seller to get buyers to contact them from their Zillow FSBO listing because Zillow sells those buyer leads to agents! The good thing about listing FSBO on Zillow is they also own Trulia, so your listing will appear there also.

You can use platforms such as ForSaleByOwner.com or FSBO.com but those options require payment and you should look at flat fee MLS if you are willing to spend a small amount of money on your listing.

We also put together a list of over 50 FSBO websites you can take a look at and see if it is worth the extra effort of manually listing your home for sale on these platforms, keep in mind some of them stop operating from time to time and you could get spam inquiries once your home is listed on them.

Pros & Cons of Listing with a Flat Fee MLS company

Pros
  • Potentially save money
  • Maximum control
  • No listing contracts
Cons
  • Most buyers won’t see your listing
  • Takes longest amount of time
  • Takes more effort
  • Requires selling experience
How Can I List My Home Using ISoldMyHouse.com? Learn more

 

6) Social Media

 

Lastly all the buzz is always on social media. There is no doubt that these platforms full of celebrities, influencers, politicians, businesses and everyday people are great for being… well… social, online anyway.

Facebook

When it comes to listing your house for sale on social media, Facebook is really the only platform we would recommend at this time. However, how you do it needs to be strategic, don’t just think putting a Facebook post on your timeline that your friends and family will see will sell your house. It won’t.

Here is what you need to do to list your house on Facebook.

  1. Have pictures taken of your home, professionally if possible.
  2. Craft a nice description of your home that is appropriate for social media.
  3. Post the pictures with the description to your timeline, announcing that your home is for sale.
  4. Join and share your post to local Facebook & Buy/Sell groups
  5. Create a Facebook marketplace listing
  6. Check messenger, your post comments and marketplace listing for comments.
  7. Schedule showings and SELL YOUR HOUSE!

Craigslist

Another popular option for selling your house on social media is Craigslist, even though technically it is not social media. However, at this time we don’t recommend listing your house for sale on Craigslist. This is because the platform took a turn for the worst with scammers and spammers who will constantly contact you about your home and distract you from people who would actually buy your house. Also, you run the risk of falling for one the the scammers ploys to take advantage of you!

Linkedin

Listing your house for sale on LinkedIn probably won’t hurt but don’t expect it to actually generate results and you do run the risk of annoying your professional network. That’s because LinkedIn is for being social in a professional way. Even real estate agents usually don’t post the houses they are selling on LinkedIn because the platform is just not for real estate listings. One strategic tip to using LinkedIn to list your house for sale would be when you are moving for a job transfer or new position, you could announce your new position and drop in there that you are selling your house as a result. This would be a much more appropriate way to use LinkedIn for a property listing.

Other Social Networks

The other social networks will not do you any good at all and stay away from listing your house on them. Pinterest, Instagram, TikTok are all not recommended for serious home sellers looking for creative ways to list their house.

 

7) Listing For Sale Alternatives

 

The 6 options above should cover all scenarios that a homeowner would need to list a property for sale. However, as with everything, alternatives should always be considered. If you are looking to sell your house without the hassle of listing for sale, here are two options that are popular choices and recommended for those looking for a quick sale.

Selling to a We Buy Houses Company

picture of cash being exchanged for keys to a house

We Buy Houses companies are legitimate real estate businesses.

And, just as with any real estate transaction, there are legalities involved. And taxes. And marketing. And home inspections. And all the things that come with buying and selling a house.

We buy houses companies eliminate a lot of the hassle with listing a home for sale.

But be prepared to accept less than the full house value though, as most of these people are investors and need to factor in costs for updates and then a profit to sell the house when it’s ready. After all, they are a business and need to make money for it to be worthwhile, but you might be surprised at the benefits of selling this way.

 
Get a fair all cash offer before selling. Click here.
 

Further Reading: If you want to know more about selling your home to a “We Buy Houses” company, check out our articles below for everything you need to know.

 

Sell To An iBuyer Company

picture of logos of ibuyer companies
Sell it online using an iBuyer real estate website like Zillow Instant Offers, Opendoor or Offerpad. This is the newest hot thing to make waves in the real estate industry. These companies act a lot like the “We Buy Houses” companies but they make you an offer within 24-72 hours based on what you submitted online. They use a lot of artificial intelligence to run through very sophisticated algorithms and figure out what an appropriate offer is.

Keep in mind, after they make an offer and you accept, they will have a home inspection period in place where they can verify the information you submitted online is correct. If they are not comfortable with the condition, they can renegotiate or back out of the offer.

Get a fair all cash offer before selling. Click here.
 

Final Thoughts

That’s everything you need to know about how to list your house for sale as well as a couple of alternatives. If you discover another way that actually works, we would be shocked but we would also add it to this article! So be sure to let us know in the comments below or anything else that you are thinking about in terms of listing your house!

 

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