It may still be too early to say the brokers have won. But after four months of FSBO, my husband and I have stopped trying to sell our apartment on our own.
Instead, we recently signed an exclusive agreement with a broker. Here's the link to our new listing.
Going into this process, we knew that we didn't have the “reach” that brokers have to market apartments, but we figured we didn't need to reach everyone who was looking for an apartment: We just needed one buyer who saw that we had a great studio in an amazing location.
What we didn't count on was having our neighbors rejected by the board and other offers that didn't ever solidify. Then, in the middle of July, a similar apartment in our building was listed at $20,000 more than ours and flew off the market in two weeks.
That was when it was clear that something had to change. We were convinced that it wasn't that our apartment was lacking or the price was too high. And the economy wasn’t helping us.
Feeling like we were in limbo, my husband and I took our apartment off the market in August to re-evaluate and consider our options.
The broker factor seemed like the only thing left.
And by then, all things considered, after giving up every Sunday of our spring and summer to host open houses, my husband and I were pretty ready to entrust the sale of our apartment to a qualified broker.
Because the apartment sale is no longer "by owner," I won't continue documenting the process here. And since the apartment is listed with a broker as of today, we have to take our site down and old links to that site in this column won't work. I will come back after we've closed and discuss what I learned.
We still think FSBO can work for some people, even in Manhattan, and we definitely don't regret trying it. But how we feel about FSBO may change over the course of the next weeks and months, so I'll be back with our lessons learned.
Until then, thanks for reading and following my experience online. We have felt some people cheering us on here, and we really appreciated that. Surprisingly, there isn't much practical information out there for FSBO sellers in New York City, and through writing about our experience here, a number of people shared their stories with us. Hopefully our experience educated some people, too.
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.