Selling a home without a realtor (also called for sale by owner, or FSBO) can save you thousands in listing agent fees — which in New Mexico average 5.59% of the sale price.
A FSBO sale makes particular sense when you already have a buyer and don’t need to list and market your home. It can also work if you’re an experienced home seller with a solid support network, like a realtor friend who can help price and list your home and a lawyer who can draw up the contract.
FSBO homes have lower median sale prices than homes sold with an agent,and they’re prone to sit on the market longer. A survey of recent home sellers found that those who sold without a realtor were nearly twice as likely as traditional sellers to wait at least three months for an acceptable offer.
While we don’t recommend the FSBO route for every seller, many people have had success selling FSBO. FSBO sales made up approximately 7% of home sales in 2022.
If you do decide to sell without a realtor, here are a few approaches you can take.
Options for selling without a realtor
1. Get a cash offer from an investor
If you need to sell fast without a realtor, you can usually get the quickest offers from investors. Investors include national brands like We Buy Houses and local house flippers. They can usually make offers on the spot and close in as few as 7–14 days.
A key benefit of investors is that they can purchase homes that most buyers either aren’t interested in or can’t get traditional funding for. (Most mortgage lenders won’t finance homes in severe disrepair.) Investors are also adept at handling tricky situations, such as pre-foreclosure, problem tenants, or debt-related property liens.
However, if you want the maximum price for your home, you probably won’t get it from an investor.
Investors earn a profit by purchasing homes at bargain prices — usually no more than 70% of fair market value — then fixing them and selling or renting them for market value. However, some investors can offer 80–90% or more through lesser-known options like novation agreementsand seller financing
Any honest investor will tell you that you’ll get more for your home by listing it with an agent. But if you feel like you’re running out of options, an investor can get you cash quickly — with no added fees for repairs or closing costs.
When should you consider selling to a cash buyer?
Selling to a cash buyer makes the most sense when:
- You’re willing to sacrifice equity to sell quickly
- Your home requires extensive repairs you can’t afford
- You’re dealing with a difficult situation, such as pre-foreclosure or problem tenants
- You inherit a property in poor or outdated condition
How can you get the most cash for your house?
When selling your house for cash, you’ll get the best outcome by seeking competing cash offers from multiple buyers. You can do this on your own, with the help of a realtor, or through a free service like Clever Offers.
The amount you get for your home will depend on your property and situation, as well as the type of agreement you make with an investor.
Options like novation agreements or mortgage assumptionscan get you more than the standard cash offer for your home. But you’ll need to have some flexibility with your selling timeline — or be willing to get paid over time instead of all at once.
2. Sell to an iBuyer
iBuyers like Offerpad and Opendoor promise a quick, hassle-free home sale.
Like investors, iBuyers make an initial cash offer based on the property details you provide and can close in as little as a week or two — no showings, negotiations, or home prep required.
In exchange for this convenience, iBuyers tend to offer 5–10% below market value and charge service fees of about 5%. They also make deductions for repairs, lowering offers by at least another 1–2%.
It’s free to request an offer from an iBuyer. If you decide to move forward, the iBuyer sends an inspector to look over your home and document any visible repairs. After the inspector’s assessment, you receive a final offer reflecting any deductions for repairs.
Many homeowners have been happy with the process of selling to an iBuyer. But recent reviews from Opendoor and Offerpad note that final offers are sometimes dramatically lower than initial estimates — even by as much as $100,000.
If you accept the final offer, the iBuyer handles the paperwork and closes on your preferred timeline — anywhere from 8–90 days, depending on the company. You don’t pay any out-of-pocket closing costs, since everything is deducted from your offer.
3. Hire a flat fee MLS listing service
If you list your home without a realtor, a flat fee MLS listing service can help you increase your listing’s visibility without breaking the bank.
While realtors charge 2.5–3% to sell your home, a flat fee MLS company can list your home for a few hundred dollars. And just like with a regular listing, your property is visible to buyers on popular real estate sites like Zillow and Redfin.
You still handle plenty of the selling process on your own, including pricing, photography, staging, showings, and negotiations. You’re also in charge of vetting offers and verifying buyers’ financing.
And you probably still need to offer a 2–3% buyer’s agent commission, or else you risk buyers going elsewhere. Most buyers won’t like having to pay their agent out of pocket, especially when other sellers are willing to cover their realtor fees.
If you’re mainly considering a flat fee MLS company to save money — and aren’t familiar with the process — you’ll find much better overall value with a discount realtor.
4. Hire a real estate attorney
If you already have a buyer, you may only need to hire a real estate attorney to handle paperwork and closing.
An attorney won’t negotiate the price or the terms of a sale, but they’re uniquely qualified to give legal advice related to your home sale.
For example, a real estate lawyer can:
- Draw up a purchase agreement based on terms you and the buyer agreed on
- Make amendments to a contract after inspections or further negotiations
- Advise you on the best approach for complicated legal issues, like selling a home with a deceased owner or splitting proceeds after a divorce
- Look for loopholes in a purchase agreement and advise you on closing them
- Complete a title search and resolve any issues
- Prepare a statement of the transaction fees you’ll pay at closing
- Draft the deed and other documents required for closing
- Oversee the closing process, including recording the deed with the appropriate county official
For a real estate transaction, an attorney may charge a flat fee or an hourly rate. Fixed rates for a straightforward home sale — including contracts and closing — can cost $500–2,000. Hourly rates can be $150–600. More complex transactions can end up costing several thousand dollars.
If you’re not sure about selling without a realtor, check out our thorough guide to selling FSBO to help you decide. If you’d like to explore other cost-saving options, consider highly rated discount real estate companies, like Clever Real Estate, that allow you to work with a top local real estate agent at about half the typical cost.
8 steps to sell a home in New Mexico without a realtor
1. Get familiar with the FSBO process
Regardless of how you choose to sell FSBO, you should familiarize yourself with the practical and legal requirements of selling a house in New Mexico.
For example, New Mexico home sellers must complete a Seller’s Property Disclosure notifying buyers about any defects that may affect the home’s value or livability. This form also has information about the home’s general condition, including its major systems and appliances.
You should provide disclosures to the buyer before signing a contract.
If you hire a lawyer, they can help you know which documents to prepare. Some flat fee MLS companies also provide legal paperwork required by the states they operate in.
2. Get your home ready to sell
If you’re planning to list your house, the next step is preparing your home for photos and showings. This means making sure everything is updated and in great shape to make a good impression on buyers.
Common preparation tasks include:
- Replacing light bulbs and broken fixtures
- Making small repairs
- Ensuring everything is up to code
- Shampooing carpets and deep cleaning
- Applying a new coat of paint
- Improving the landscaping
Strive for a clean, decluttered look when prepping your home for sale. You want the buyer to imagine living there, so many realtors recommend sticking to neutral paint colors and removing personal items.
Avoid making costly upgrades unless they affect the home’s ability to sell. Old, stained carpet or a leaky roof could scare away buyers, so you should address those problems. But you probably won’t get your money back by adding a new porch or swimming pool.
When you’re comfortable with how your home looks, stage it and take listing photos. Realtors especially recommend staging for luxury properties and homes that may need help getting buyers to look past their flaws.
You can do the staging and photography yourself or hire them out. On average, a New Mexico photographer charges $148 for new listings, and a stager charges about $1,529.
3. Price your home accurately
When selling a house in New Mexico without a realtor, be very careful about choosing a list price. This task is something half of recent FSBO sellers struggled to get right. Err on the side of listing your house either at or slightly below market value.
Often, high list prices result in more time on the market, lost buyer interest, and the seller lowering the asking price before actually achieving a sale. A more competitive list price can lead to a lot more showings and interest from buyers, possibly sparking a bidding war and significantly driving up the price.
According to research from Collateral Analytics and the National Association of Realtors, FSBO sellers make anywhere from 5% to 26% less on their homes than realtors with comparable listings.
We recommend using one of the following options to come up with your home’s list price.
Get a comparative market analysis (CMA)
A comparative market analysis (CMA) compiles data from recent sales of homes that are similar to yours, and uses it to produce an accurate list price for your home. You can get a comparative market analysis from:
- Your real estate agent (realtors often provide CMAs for free)
- A flat fee MLS company
- Create your own CMA; just be sure to steer clear of personal bias
Hire an appraiser
A professional home appraiser is highly experienced in assessing a home’s value. They’ll consider your home’s condition and features to estimate its present market value. Think of a home appraisal as similar to a CMA, except that it uses human expertise instead of data analytics.
In New Mexico, the average cost of an appraisal is .
4. List and market your home
Before you carry out your marketing plan, familiarize yourself with local real estate advertising regulations to make sure you’re not breaking any laws.
Next, list your home on free sites like Craigslist, Zillow and Trulia (in the FSBO section), Facebook Marketplace, and ForSaleByOwner.com.
Publicize your listing on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tiktok, Nextdoor, and LinkedIn. These platforms have a long reach and are free.
Don’t forget the classic, basic yard sign— but only after you check your town’s laws, as well as any HOA regulations, to make sure signs are allowed.
If you want maximum exposure, think about working with a New Mexico flat fee MLS company.
New Mexico flat fee MLS companies
Flat fee MLS companies can help New Mexico FSBO sellers by getting their listing onto the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This gets the listing seen by buyers’ agents and is automatically populated onto huge websites like Zillow, Redfin, and Realtor.com.
These services cost much less than a full-service agent, but they typically don’t offer any services beyond a barebones listing.
In New Mexico, this will cost you about $300 to $1,000. Our top picks for flat fee MLS companies in New Mexico are:
- For Sale by Owner New Mexico: Best for first-time FSBO sellers
- Affordable Realty Services: Best for premium flat fee services
- Congress Realty: Best for low-cost and simplicity
Read our in-depth guide to New Mexico’s flat fee MLS companies to decide which one works best for you.
Required New Mexico Seller Disclosures
New Mexico has pretty standard disclosure laws; sellers are required to disclose “all adverse material facts” to buyers. Disclosure forms must be provided to the buyer before the seller can sign the offer. And New Mexico does have a unique disclosure statute that requires sellers to provide buyers with official estimates of future property taxes.
All U.S. sellers are required to disclose facts about lead-based paint.
You should make these disclosure forms available to buyers by having hard copies at showings, attaching them to the listing, and sending digital copies to any interested buyers.
5. Manage showings on your own
Managing and conducting showings is time-consuming even for an experienced agent. If you’re selling “For Sale by Owner” in New Mexico and handling showings by yourself, make sure you have a system to make things easier on yourself.
A free address book and calendar tool is invaluable to track showings and buyers. If you use a flat fee MLS company, many of them will provide showing management software.
Here are some proven tips on conducting your own home showings:
- For maximum efficiency, schedule showings back to back. This will also build competition between buyers.
- Consider using an electronic lockbox for secure, independent showings
- Try not to be present during showings.
- If you must be in the home during showings, don’t hover; your presence could inhibit buyers
Finally, print up documents for buyers to take home. Your fliers should include a profile of the home and your contact info. Consider attaching required disclosure, for buyers with serious interest. Be prepared to answer in-depth questions about the home before and after showings.
6. Review and negotiate offers
When buyers submit offers, they’ll be in the form of a purchase and sale agreement, also known as a buy-sell. In New Mexico, it should look something like this.
When you’re mulling offers, keep the following points in mind:
- Always read the entire text of the offer before signing, and make sure you’re clear on every point.
- Is it a financed offer or a cash offer? Many buyers prefer cash offers since they don’t come with the risk of financing falling through at the last minute.
- Review the buyer’s contingencies. If these conditions go unmet, the sale could fall through. You can also add your own contingencies.
- Is the buyer asking for repair credits? These are up for negotiation.
- If you want to submit a counteroffer, you can amend the sale agreement and return it to the buyer’s agent.
- Here are some proven negotiation strategies you can use.
In New Mexico, you’re not required to hire a real estate attorney to look over your New Mexico real estate contracts. However, if you’re selling FSBO in New Mexico, it’s advisable to consult an attorney to do a title search, provide title insurance, and make sure your contract doesn’t have any major holes.
7. Allow the buyer to conduct due diligence
The interlude between when the seller accepts the offer and the day of closing is called the due diligence period.
During this time, the buyer and their lender conduct:
- Mortgage underwriting
- Property title search
- The home inspection
- The home appraisal
- The final walkthrough
Any negotiations that result from these activities have to be resolved before you can move onto closing.
This is also the period when either party can back out of the deal if their contingencies aren’t satisfied. If you want to walk away from the deal without a contingency trigger, consult with a real estate attorney to see what your options are.
The close date will be listed in the purchase agreement. On closing day, you may meet with the buyer, or you may have a separate closing. Closing is usually facilitated by a third party— typically a real estate broker or attorney, or the title company.
You’ll receive a closing statement a few days before closing. This document lays out all the fees associated with the sale, and who pays them.
On the actual day of closing, you’ll sign the finalized New Mexico for sale by owner contract, as well as all required legal and financial paperwork, and then transfer the deed to the buyer. They’ll also receive the house keys, and you’ll be paid. In New Mexico, you may have to wait up to four days to receive payment.
Cost of selling a house without a realtor in New Mexico
Below, you’ll find a list of prices for common services you might want to consider if you decide to sell without a realtor. However, know that if your home is in need of repairs or is in a buyer’s market, you might need to spend a lot more to prep and market your property.
💸 Common costs for FSBO sellers
|Appraisal||$410 to $475||To price your home more accurately|
|Photography||$148||To compete with homes listed by agents|
|Staging||$1,529||To stand out to local buyers|
|Real estate attorney||$200 per hour||To assist with paperwork, contracts, and legal requirements|
|Flat fee MLS listing||$300 to $1,000||To get listed on the MLS|
|Buyer’s agent commission||2.8% of sale price||To compensate the agent that represents the buyer (it’s customary for the seller to pay)|
Overall, on average, it costs 7.5% of the home price to sell by owner and about 10% of the home price to sell with a real estate agent. However, the amount you’ll actually save will depend on repairs you need to make, concessions, and other expenses.
Use our calculator to get an idea of how much you can expect to spend if you sell without a realtor.
If you’re considering selling without a realtor in New Mexico, check out our friends at Clever Real Estate. Clever eliminates all the hassles and headaches of FSBO while helping you pay less than you would for a traditional realtor.
In New Mexico, sellers pay an average of 2.8% to a listing agent. Considering the median home value in New Mexico is $272,000, that amounts to $7,507. But with Clever, you can sell with a top local agent for just 1.5%, letting you keep more of your home’s equity in your pocket.
For sale by owner paperwork in New Mexico
Here’s a list of the New Mexico paperwork you’ll need to sell your home without a realtor.
- New Mexico Seller’s Disclosure Form
- Federal Lead-Based Paint Disclosure
- FEMA Flood Risk Disclosure
- New Mexico Purchase Agreement
Not finding what you’re looking for? Check out our comprehensive list of paperwork for selling your house without a realtor.
Best alternative: Work with a discount broker
For many people, trying to sell without an agent isn’t worth the hassle. If you think you’ll need some help along the way, a discount broker is a good alternative.
Discount brokers are full-service real estate agents who offer reduced commission rates. Sellers can save thousands while still receiving assistance from an expert local agent.
For discount broker services, we highly recommend Clever Real Estate. Clever pre-negotiates with top agents to offer you low commission rates without compromising on service quality. Other reputable discount brokers include Redfin and Ideal Agent.
Frequently asked questions
Do I need a lawyer to sell my house in New Mexico?
Yes, it is required to hire a lawyer when selling your house in New Mexico. Although they cost a few hundred dollars an hour, their fees are worth it to ensure that all your legal documents are correct and without issue. Learn more by chatting with an experienced real estate lawyer.
Is selling a house without a realtor worth it in New Mexico?
If you have the real estate know-how to do it properly, then selling without a realtor can be worth it. Selling FSBO will help you save the 3% commission fee that realtors typically charge, but you stand to lose a lot more than that if you don’t know what you’re doing. For instance, inaccurately pricing your home will easily slash away a few thousand dollars from your profit — and that’s just one risk of many.
If you’d like some more advice about selling your home, here are a few great resources to check out:How realtor commissions work in New Mexico: Even if you decide to sell your house without an agent, it’s still a good idea to offer commission to the buyer’s agent. Learn how much realtors expect to earn and what you can do to make your listing more appealing to agents and their clients. Top We Buy Houses Companies in New Mexico REVEALED: If you need to sell your home in a hurry, a We Buy Houses company may purchase your house as-is for a reduced rate. Find out if this option could be the best option for you here!
How to Sell Your House — The Ultimate Guide: Our guide breaks down the process of selling a house in 12 steps. We discuss how to find and choose a realtor, list your home for sale, review and negotiate offers, close, and calculate capital gains tax.