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November 21, 2006


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Bernice Ross

Hmmm--so they get more traffic on a single website in Madison. I would like to highly recommend that the authors of that article visit Alexa.com and compare the web traffic generated by that site against the number of hits generated by Realtor.com. By the way, when you post on Realtor.com, you are also posted on two other little websites as well--AOL.com and the WallStreetJournal.com. Maximum exposure equals maximum price to the seller. Also, FSBO traffic is way down from two years ago. Check the Alexa stats for the largest FSBO site, www.ForSalebyOwner.com--there is a steady downward trend. Furthermore, the number of FSBOs who list with a broker is up from 84 percent to 87 percent. If I were actively selling right now, I would definitely say that I don't clean houses--instead, I see to it that your property is on over 20 different websites. Then again, it's your choice--which job would you like your agent to do?

Maureen Francis

Don't even clean the house! Do people really expect that? I guess, sadly, some do.

Gabriel Silverstein

Funny, the list of services FSBOMadison has above doesn't list cleaning the house either...nevermind the lack of any expertise or help with the process. Show me an exit survey of those that have used FSBOMadison and capture an accurate set of views across the spectrum of those that have used the service, including those of those that have tried and failed to FSBO their property through that site. Every other FSBO survey ever done shows an overwelming percentage of FSBO sellers saying they never want to FSBO ever again.

Andrian Curshen

I am a Realtor licensed in the state of New Jersey. I am always amazed at the outrageous claims the online FSBO sites (there are literally dozens of them) make about the success of their services. However, I am yet to see one such site that tells you what percentage of users actually sell their houses after using their site. No one knows what the success rate is of sellers who use these online services. However it is well documented that less than 25% of all sellers who attempt to sell their houses privately - i.e. without the use of a professional Realtor, actually succeed. It's absolutely true that some 76% of private sellers eventually turn to a Realtor. What the online services don't tell you is that Realtors on average get 16% more for any given house than a private seller does. So even if a seller pays 6% to a broker (and it must be stressed that all broker fees are negotiable and the average is far less than 6%) then he/she will still be ahead by 10%. Why is this so? Because real estate agents have access via their broker to a formidable array of powerful marketing services that private sellers do not have. When a Realtor lists a home for sale, that listing is seen by every agent in the area - perhaps as many as 5-10,000 qgents, depending on the area - and by extension tens or hundreds of thousands of their customers. These are the people most likely to want to buy your house. Realtors spend their lives buying and selling properties, that's what they do. The average Realtor spends 80% of his/her week at this pursuit. Why should a person who is in some other business believe that they can do better than a Realtor? I wouldn't try to wire my house for example, there are electricians who do this very well. Realtors are professionals who are held to incredibly high standards by state agencies and by their professional associations like the National Association of Realtors. It is utterly irresponsible of these online services to suggest that "you don't need a Realtor." For a professional job you need a professional.

Rex Edwards

I am a Broker in the Austin, Texas area and I too agree with most of the comments here. It would be hard for me to believe for 150.00 you are going to get any sort of service. What Professional would work for that? We see these types of services in our marketplace and have for years. They come and go. I wonder why they go? Hmmm... Now competition is not a bad thing. There is room for all of us to make money. I think we have to focus on ourselves and what we provide and the rest will take care of its self. However that being said, I do hate to see the public get less than what they deserve. It really lowers the appeal factor to REALTORS when so many other services around are only looking for a quick (if even a small) buck. The customer should come first and we can all profit from that. it is a win, win deal. These types of services will continue to pop up. With the advent of the Internet, it makes it much easier for them to be in business literally on a shoestring. You can get hosting for a little of nothing now days. I would really like to know what they do for the 150.00. I recently received an e-mail from a new company operating out of Dallas and Houston I believe and they said they will list your home for something like 350.00 and put it in the MLS and offer you full service. Now what customer would believe that?? It is impossible to pay the bills and to do all that we have to do. Ok off of my soapbox now.

FSBO Louisville

What a great story! It really PAYS to know what you are doing! :)

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Frances Flynn Thorsen

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