Let’s face it, Realtors are expensive. Most agents around Baltimore charge 6% of the final sales price and an admin fee to list and sell your property. For a $200k property that’s $12,000 in commission plus a $395 admin fee. You’ve been working your whole life to build equity in your property and you want to keep as much of it as possible.
Without further ado, let’s get into your options for avoiding real estate commissions in Baltimore:
For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
For sale by owner is where a seller lists, markets, negotiates, and transacts the selling of his or her property without the assistance of a Realtor. You may decide to go this route if you want to control each aspect of the process. Maybe you or don’t trust Realtors due to a bad experience in the past.
- Interact directly with buyers: You’re in control and don’t need to communicate through third parties
- Contract Flexibility: You are not forced to use a Maryland Realtor contract. This can simplify the contract, but be wary that you are responsible for its legality.
- Locked in a listing agreement: When Realtors list your home
- Lots of work: As the seller you are required to conduct all marketing, understand contract law, schedule showings, hold open houses, and navigate the confusing closing process alone. It can take tens if not hundreds of hours to conduct one transaction.
- Smaller Buyer Pool: Over 90% of Baltimore buyers work with a realtor. To advertise to these buyers you need to be listed on the Baltimore Multiple Listing Service. Unfortunately only Realtors have access to listing properties on the MLS.
- May still need to pay a buyer agent 3% for some buyers: Buyer agents will likely only show a FSBO property to their buyers if the seller is offering a commission
- Expensive Repairs: Most buyers on the market are owner occupants and are looking for a home that’s move-in condition. In Baltimore it is customary for them to conduct an inspection by a certified inspector. As a seller you will need to correct the list of defects discovered by the inspector. These repairs could cost thousands of dollars.
- Closing Assistance: A majority of buyers in the Baltimore market will need closing assistance to have enough cash to close on your property. This is typically between 3-6% of the purchase price of the home.
- Having to wait for your money: Between marketing the property, finding a buyer, conducting repairs, and receiving financing approval, it could be many months before your home is officially sold and money is wired into your bank account.
Instead of selling the property you could take the equity out as a loan. If you’re age 62 years or older you may qualify for a reverse mortgage. This is a good option if you see yourself living out the rest of your days in this home and aren’t worried about the cost to your estate once you pass.
- Allows you to stay in your home
- Can be a lump sum, line of credit, or monthly income
- May not have access to the funds for up to 12 months
- Still required to pay insurance and property tax
- Home must stay as your primary residence
- Loan is due in full once the owners pass away or the home is sold
Sell Directly to a Baltimore Investor
Selling to an Baltimore investor like us can be the fastest, stress-free way of selling your Baltimore property and avoiding real estate commission fees. This option lets you sell the property on your terms and timeline. There are no Realtors involved so you get to keep all of your profits. By selling your property now, you are able to avoid thousands of dollars in mortgage payments, water and electrical bills, property taxes, insurance payments, HOA fees, and special assessments and all these savings go directly into your pocket.
- Can pay cash
- No inspection required
- No hidden costs: You pay no closing fees
- Fast Closing: Transaction can close in as little as 7 days
- Sold “As-Is”: Condition does not matter
- Any situation: Can even sell investment properties occupied by tenants