The FSBO Diaries

The FSBO Diaries (Wk. 15-16): Bring it on, brokers

By Kathy  | July 7, 2010 - 7:50AM
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As I wrote a couple of months ago, my husband and I agreed to consider using brokers if we hadn’t sold our apartment  by now.

I didn't think that we'd have offers from our neighbors rejected by the board on our way to this point...but here we are.

So, attention brokers: As of now, we are officially offering 2.5 percent if you bring us a buyer.

Consider the gauntlet thrown.

Now, here’s what went into the decision…Even though we’d imagined getting to this point, actually making the leap took some discussion.  My husband and I have been talking about it for the past month, weighing the pros and cons.

We didn't want to work with buyers' brokers because...

  1. We wanted control of our listing and how our place is represented online, in print, in person, etc.
  2.  We're comfortable with the amount of work that comes with selling the apartment on our own and we would prefer not to pay a commission
  3. We're confident about the value of the apartment and believe that it's just a matter of time before we find our buyer

We decided to offer a commission to buyers' brokers now because...

  1. The added exposure during a slower season (summer) would be helpful
  2.  We've been on the market for three months and hosting open houses every weekend is exhausting
  3. We realized that working with buyers' brokers can only help us at this point. And just because we're offering a commission now doesn't mean a broker will be the one to sell it.  

So, the next step is letting buyers’ brokers know. I told the Halstead broker who sold me my apartment in 1999 and who I've stayed in touch with that we're now offering commissions to buyers' brokers.

Beyond that, I guess I get the word out one agency at a time.

We are definitely interested to see whether offering a commission now will increase traffic at open houses and bring in offers.

And we’re especially curious to find out if a broker brings in the final buyer.

If that happens, the FSBO vs. broker debate might be answered for us.  Let's see what the brokers have to offer and how much of a difference their services actually make.


Kathy is in the market to buy (from an owner OR broker) the perfect prewar 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom apartment in Brooklyn with private outdoor space that's near the subways (the good ones).

Click here for the complete FSBO Diaries.


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