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For Sale By Owner Florida - Buying a Home for Sale by Owner in Florida

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Many new prospective homeowners are confused by the complicated and seemingly endless process. Several questions come up when looking for a home to buy. One of these questions is about the differences between buying a home from a real estate agent versus buying a home from for sale by owner. This is becoming very common for Florida homebuyers because of the mere fact that overall, Florida has not recovered from the housing glut that spread widely throughout the country in 2008. To make matters worse for Florida homeowners, home values had already begun to decline statewide in the first quarter of 2006.

As home values continue to decline, owners who are in need to sell are trying to recoup as much as possible in other ways. This includes saving money through bypassing high real estate agent commissions. To save themselves from these fees that eat into any their profit or make their losses even more painful, home sellers are willing to do the work themselves in showing, preparing, and advertising their home for sale by owner in Florida.

Homebuyers have long held some myths about homes for sale by owner. Florida homes being no exception. In order to dispel these myths a few facts should be made perfectly clear:

• Homes for sale by owners are serious sellers. Many believe they are just going through a trial run with no intention of completing the sale, but most homeowners are not willing to go through so much work to not go through with it.

• Owners are flexible in their prices. Many people avoid for sale by owner homes in Florida because they falsely believe the owner’s price is final. Looking at statistics, just the opposite is true. Homes for sale by owner in Florida have a larger gap between asking price and final price than those sold by agents.

• Most homeowners selling homes themselves are upfront and fair. Many people believe they are selling their homes themselves because they do not want to reveal hidden facts to a realtor. The fact is that there is nothing preventing realtors from hiding facts themselves to make a sale.

If revealing these misconceptions is not enough for you, several steps can be taken to ensure that you are not taken by an unscrupulous owner:

• Have a lawyer look over the purchase contract. If the owner does not have a contract ready, negotiate splitting the costs of having a lawyer draw one up. The contract should contain contingency plans should defects be found that were not revealed or that were promised to be fixed. Get everything in writing. Other contingencies that should be included in the contract are accurate appraisal, home inspections, clear title, and insurability issues. The contract should also outline who is responsible for paying the fees, including taxes, escrow fees, and title fees.

• Lowball your first offer. Consider the asking price, take a guess at what you believe the home to be worth, and then go several thousand lower.

• Always use an escrow service for the deposit. Never give the deposit to the owner.

• Make sure you use a reputable home inspector.

• Buy title insurance, in case unforeseen discrepancies are found later.

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