Should I use a realtor? | What does a realtor do in Florida? | Cost of selling without a realtor | Florida real estate regulations | How to sell without a realtor | Alternatives to selling without a realtor | FAQs
Selling your home without a realtor means you won’t have to pay a listing commission, which in Florida averages 2.7% of the sale price. Considering a typical Florida house is worth about $367,000, that’s a savings of $9,864.
However, trying to sell a home For Sale by Owner (FSBO) can be tough. It will cost you a lot of time and energy because you’ll have to complete most parts of the selling process.
In the end, selling a house without a real estate agent isn’t worth it for most homeowners in Florida. Especially considering there are low commission real estate companies that offer professional assistance for a lower cost.
If you’re considering selling a house without a realtor in Florida, read on to find out everything you need to know to do it successfully.
✍️ Key Takeaways of FSBO Sales
- Selling without a real estate agent means avoiding a listing commission (2.7% on average in Florida). But in exchange for those savings, you’ll have to do everything from advertising your home to completing legal paperwork to negotiating the final deal.
- In most cases, you’ll still need to offer a buyer’s agent commission. 2.7% is typical in Florida.
- Selling without an agent is best for experienced sellers or people selling to family or friends.
- For most sellers, there are better cost-saving options that will net you more money and provide professional support.
Should I sell my house without a realtor?
Not sure if FSBO is right for you? Use the checklists below to find out if selling your Florida home without a realtor is the best option for your situation.
✅ Selling without an agent might be right for you if…
You want to save on commission.
When you sell without a realtor, you won’t pay a listing agent commission. In Florida, that puts 2.7% of your final sale price back in your pocket. However, you will still need to offer a competitive buyer’s agent commission (2.7% is typical in Florida).
You already have a buyer.
If you’ve already lined up a deal with a friend or family member, there’s no need to pay an agent to list your home on the MLS, host open houses, or negotiate on your behalf.
You have lots of time to spare.
Selling a house is a lot of work! You’ll need time to take on all the tasks a realtor normal handles.
You’re in a hot seller’s market.
If you’re in a high-demand area with low inventory, buyers are more likely to come to you. With a flat fee MLS package or a “For Sale” in your yard, you could find a buyer relatively easily and without additional professional help.
Here’s how fast and for how much homes in Florida are currently selling for so you see how your local market compares.
|Avg. days on market||Avg. listing price|
🚫 Selling without a realtor might not be right for you if…
Your short on time.
If you’re on a tight deadline, hiring an agent might be your best option. Unless you already have a buyer lined up, you’ll have to squeeze home selling tasks into your nights and weekends — or make sacrifices elsewhere in your schedule.
You’ve never sold a home in Florida.
Without an agent, you won’t have any professional guidance about increasing your property’s curb appeal, pricing your home, or choosing the best offer.
We can’t say this enough: If you’ve never been through a Florida home sale or are facing a complicated transaction, do not try it without a real estate agent.
Making one mistake could cost you tens of thousands of dollars or create some serious legal headaches for you.
You want to sell for more money.
There are conflicting studies about whether FSBO properties sell for less compared to those sold by agents.
On the one hand, FSBO sellers are more likely to sell to friends or family and offer them a good deal on the home. This lowers the average price of homes sold without a realtor.
However, if a FSBO seller is inexperienced with pricing a home, they can lose money by pricing too low or scare away buyers by pricing too high.
If selling your home without a realtor sounds too risky or like too much work, you have other ways to save on commissions. You can work with a discount broker, save money, and not have to deal with the stress of selling without a realtor.
What does a realtor do in Florida?
It takes a lot of work to sell a home in Florida, whether it's a condo in Miami or a vacation home in Orlando. Without a real estate agent, most of the home selling process will fall to you, and considering how hot most Florida markets are, one mistake could cost you thousands of dollars.
Here's all the professional assistance you'll miss out on if you list your home FSBO in the Sunshine State:
Prices homes competitively
Agents will do a comparative market analysis (CMA) to accurately price your home. They look at the popularity of your housing market, how much similar properties are selling for, new upgrades you’ve added to the home, and other variable factors.
To get an idea of how much home values can vary, here’s a comparison of different sized homes value in Florida.
|Home size||Home value in Florida|
If you sell FSBO, consider hiring a licensed appraiser to objectively evaluate how much your home is worth. Pricing is one of the most important aspects of listing your house, so it pays to get it right.
» LEARN: What is an appraisal?
Connects you with local pros
Experienced agents have networks of the best professionals in the area. They can connect you with handymen, stagers, photographers, and other service providers so you don’t have to track down reliable pros on your own.
Lists your home
Working with an agent will get your property listed on the multiple listing service (MLS) database. This can only be accessed by real estate agents, who use it to find homes to show their clients. Without a realtor, you’ll need to pay a flat fee MLS company to list your property, or you will face a much smaller pool of potential buyers.
Finds potential buyers
An agent can market your home, schedule open houses, reach out to potential buyers, and follow up with people who toured your home.
Agents will also take care of negotiating with prospective buyers and dealing with paperwork to ensure the sale doesn’t fall through.
Cost of selling a house without a realtor in Florida
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||$300 to $380||To price your home more accurately|
|Photography||$150||To compete with homes listed by agents|
|Staging||$3,131||To stand out to local buyers|
|Real estate attorney||$251 per hour||To assist with paperwork, contracts, and legal requirements|
|Flat fee MLS listing||$75 to $800||To get listed on the MLS|
|Buyer’s agent commission||2.7% 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 Florida, 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 Florida, sellers pay an average of 2.7% to a listing agent. Considering the median home value in Florida is $367,000, that amounts to $9,864. 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.
Florida regulations FSBO sellers should know
Most FSBO transactions in Florida take place at a title company to ensure that the buyer receives a clear title. Title companies facilitate the closing process, collect closing costs, and finalize all the paperwork.
However, before closing day arrives, sellers are responsible for following Florida’s real estate laws and regulations, which could include disclosing certain information about the property.
Florida sellers are required to disclose all known conditions of a home that could reduce its value or make it less desirable to buyers.
Specific disclosure requirements in the state of Florida include:
- The risks associated with radon gas
- For beachfront properties, coastal protection regulations and the possibility of erosion
- Any HOA or condo fees and their regulations
- A property tax summary explaining that the current property taxes may not remain the same after the buyer purchases the home
- Federally regulated disclosures about lead-based paint
Paperwork for Florida real estate sales
As a FSBO seller, It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of documents you’ll need to sell your home in Florida, such as:
- A copy of the purchase agreement
- The closing statement
- The signed deed
- The bill of sale
- The affidavit of title
- The agreement related to property taxes
Mineral and water rights
Some Florida homeowners might not own the subsurface property or beach property of their homes. These are referred to as mineral rights and water rights.
According to Florida Statute 704.05, the mineral rights owner is allowed to enter the property to mine the subsurface. Subsurface property can also be bought and sold just like other real estate.
Make sure to let prospective buyers know if another party owns the mineral rights or water rights of the property. This information can usually be found on your title insurance policy or in your county’s property records.
Do I need a real estate attorney in Florida?
Although FSBO sellers are not required to hire a real estate attorney in Florida, selling a home can raise complicated legal situations. If you’re confused by any aspect of selling your home, you should bring your questions to an attorney.
An attorney can also review your closing documents and contracts to ensure there won’t be any issues with the sale or title transfer.
9 steps to sell a home in Florida without a realtor
Selling your home without a realtor can be intimidating. Here, we’ve created a step-by-step guide for you to rely on and make the selling process less daunting. For more detailed information, check out our guide to selling a house in Florida.
🏡 How to get your home ready to sell
1. Make basic repairs
Simple repairs, such as fixing a squeaky door or repairing dents in the drywall, can greatly improve the aesthetic appeal of your house. Outdoors, a fresh coat of paint, and some basic landscaping work can boost curb appeal.
2. Stage the rooms
You can hire a professional stager to get your home picture-perfect for showings, but this can be expensive. While prices vary from city to city, in Florida it costs an average of $3,131 to stage a house.
3. Photograph the home
High-quality photos of your property can make a huge difference when attracting buyers. Prices can vary based on your location, but in Florida you can expect to pay $150 on average for a session with a professional photographer.
✍ How to list your home for sale
4. Get an appraisal
Without a real estate agent, it can be difficult to accurately price your home. A pre-listing appraisal is a professional assessment of a home to evaluate its condition and estimate its value. In Florida, an appraisal costs $300 to $380.
» MORE: Tools for pricing your home
5. Advertise your home
In Florida, this will cost you $75 to $800, but without a realtor, it’s the only way to get your property listed on the MLS — which is how most buyers find homes.
📅 How to show your home
6. Get organized
Once buyers start contacting you, it’s important to have a system to track showing appointments and their contact information. If you don’t have one already, set up a digital calendar that will remind you when showings are and also allow you to take notes about the buyer.
Also, ask if they have a pre-approval letter from a lender before scheduling a tour. A pre-approval letter shows that a buyer is able and qualified to buy a house.
7. Don’t hover
During a showing, be available to answer the buyer’s questions, but don’t follow them around from room to room. That can come off as overwhelming and scare buyers off.
🤝 How to accept an offer and close
8. Know your priorities
Reviewing offers is about more than the price. You also need to consider whether the buyer’s moving timeline aligns with your own and what types of contingencies or concessions they’re asking for. Those parts of the offer will impact negotiations and how much you’ll actually walk away with.
» LEARN: Common home buying contingencies
9. Use a title and/or escrow company
It’s important to have a third party that will take care of collecting signatures and fees before and during closing. Often this will be your title company, but in some cases, you might have to find a separate escrow company to manage the money involved in the transaction.
Alternatives to selling without a realtor in Florida
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, here are a few other low-cost options.
Florida flat fee MLS companies
If you’re confident about selling your home on your own, you might benefit from using a flat fee MLS company to increase the visibility of your property.
A few of the best flat fee MLS agencies in Florida include Flat Fee MLS Realty, beycome, and Jack Keller, Inc. There are a variety of packages and services to choose from, ranging from $75 to $800.
|Company||Price||Number of Photos||MLS Listing||Pricing Assistance||Negotiation Support||Yard Sign||Open House|
|Flat Fee MLS Realty||$79-$299||25+||Unlimited||✅||❌||✅||❌|
|Jack Keller||$75-$375||Up to 50||Unlimited||❌||❌||❌||✅|
|List Now Realty||$299||Max allowed||Unlimited||✅||✅||❌||❌|
|Doug Addeo||$177-$795||Up to 32||6 months to 2 years||❌||✅||✅||❌|
Another option for FSBO sellers is hiring a discount broker. Discount brokers in Florida can help you save thousands in realtor fees without having to compromise on the high-quality services a great agent can provide.
Below you can compare some of the top discount brokers available in Florida:
For discount broker services, we highly recommend our friends at Clever! Clever pre-negotiates with top agents to offer you the lowest commission rates without compromising on service quality.
Frequently asked questions
Is selling a house without a realtor worth it in Florida?
Selling a home in Florida without a realtor will save you the 2.5-3% you'd typically pay them in commission. But selling a house is more than most people can handle alone. For instance, you'll have to accurately price your home or else you can miss out on thousands of dollars. Unless you're an experienced home seller and know your local market, it's most likely not worth it to sell FSBO.
Do I need a lawyer to sell my house in Florida?
Home sellers in Florida are not required to hire a real estate attorney. However, having a legal professional help you with contracts and paperwork can be worth it. Typically, in Florida it costs a couple hundred dollars an hour to hire a real estate attorney.
What paperwork do I need to sell a house without a realtor in Florida?
You'll need different documents for each stage of the selling process. Pre-listing paperwork will include the property survey, original sale contract, and comparative market analysis (CMA). Once your house is on the market, make sure to prepare the home inspection report, appraisal report, disclosure forms, and the final purchase agreement. At closing, you'll need the deed, closing statement, and your property tax records.
Is selling without a realtor in Florida the right choice for me?
Listing your Florida home without a realtor might help you save on commission, but it's not right for everyone. If you're not familiar with the real estate market or aren't comfortable negotiating with prospective buyers, you might want to consider working with an agent instead.
Selling a home in Florida can be complicated and confusing. If you need some extra guidance, these resources can further demystify the Florida home seller experience:
Average Real Estate Commission in Florida: What’s Fair in 2022?: Realtors earn a commission when they help a client buy or sell a home. Learn how much Florida agents expect to earn and what you can do to reduce commission rates.
Cost to Sell a House in Florida: Seller Closing Costs and More: Selling your home without a realtor can save you money on commission, but you’ll be on the hook for several other costs. Find out what you’ll need to budget for here!
9 Steps to Selling a House in Florida: Our real estate experts break down the Florida home selling process from start to finish.
How to Sell a House By Owner: Paperwork You Need: If you decide to sell without a realtor, check out all the forms you’ll need for a smooth transaction.