FSBO Resource Center

Welcome to your FSBO Research Center! In the Real Estate Industry this means “For Sale by Owner”. Many of you are  selling your home FSBO because you want to make sure you net the most amount of money possible and you do not want to pay a Realtor commissions OR you know someone that may have had a bad experience with an agent and you do not trust them. Am I right? Either way I am driven to help anyone and everyone with all their Real Estate needs whether I represent them or not. So… I hope what I have put on this page will benefit and help you sell your home and more importantly get you the most amount of money possible!

Step 1 Selling Yourself vs. Listing with an Agent

Decide if you really want to sell the home on your own OR hire a professional Real Estate agent like me. Here are some things to think about before you embark on this endeavor.
  1. What is the current Real Estate market conditions in my area?
  2. What is the correct value to sell my home in today’s market?
  3. Should I advertise? When, Where, and how much will it cost?
  4. Am I prepared to take phone calls at all times to respond to inquires? Can I identify the qualified buyers from the “browsers”?
  5. Am I willing to show my house during work days, evenings and weekends? Do I mind being alone in the house with a complete stranger?
  6. Can I negotiate realistically and Impartially?
  7. Can i assist a buyer with financing information? Do I understand financing, second mortgages and other variables?
  8.  Am I familiar with the requirements of real estate disclosure law? Do I understand all the aspects including title insurance, legal descriptions, termite inspections, home warranty, taxes, easements, liens, trust deeds, etc…?
  9. Am I prepared to handle the final walk-through with the buyer and settle disputes before closing?
  10. Do I know how to complete all the contracts and paperwork?
  11. BONUS QUESTION: Would I prefer to say “Please call my agent”?
If you said YES to all of those then you are well on your way to selling your home on your own! Lets move to the next step.

Step 2 Disclosures in Real Property Transactions

There are numerous statutes which have a significant effect on real estate transactions. Be advised the laws concerning disclosure obligations may change, you should research the area of interest before proceeding and consult an attorney or a knowledgeable real estate professional. Not only is it the law to disclose but also in today’s world there are many insidious people that may try and  pray on the unsuspecting FSBO and you want to make sure you have all your P’s and Q’s in order during and after the transaction!  Below I have included some of the  disclosures you may need.

List of Disclosures

(information deemed reliable but not guaranteed and is subject to change)
  1. Disclosures Upon Transfer of Residential Property
  2. Earthquake Guides
  3. Smoke Detector Statement of Compliance
  4. Disclosure Regarding Lead-Based Paint Hazards
  5. Structural Pest Control Inspection and Certification Reports
  6. Energy Conservation Retro Fit and Thermal Insulation
  7. Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act
  8. Notice and Disclosure to Buyer of Site Tax Withholding on Disposition of Property
  9. Furnishing Controlling Documents and Financial Statements
  10. Advisability of Title Insurance
  11. Certificate Regarding Water Hearer’s Security Against Earthquake
  12. Database- Location of Registered Sex Offenders

Step 3 Seller’s Financial Responsibilities

The process of selling your home involves several costs and fees. The following information is very general. Many of these items can be negotiated with the buyer. Consult your real estate professional for details.
  • Real estate commission
  • Document preparation fee for deed
  • Documentary transfer tax
  • Any city transfer/conveyance tax (according to contract)
  • Any loan fees required by buyer’s lender
  • Payoff of all loans in seller’s name (or existing loan balance if being assumed by buyer)
  • Interest accrued to lender being paid off, statement fees, reconveyance fees and any prepayment penalties.
  • Termite inspection (according to contract)
  • Termite work (according to contract)
  • Home warranty (according to contract)
  • Any judgments, tax liens, etc., against the seller
  • Tax proration (for any taxes unpaid at time of transfer of title)
  • Any unpaid homeowner’s dues
  • Recording charges to clear all documents of record against seller
  • Any bonds or assessments (according to contract)
  • Any and all delinquent taxes
  • Notary fees
  • Escrow fees (according to contract)
  • Title insurance premium (according to contract)
If you still are wanting to sell great! If you are maybe having second thoughts call me at 951-310-6920 or Click Here to schedule a time online to talk!

Step 4 Picking an Escrow Company

This is an important step! As a Realtor I know how important this can be. The escrow is basically the nuts and bolts of the transaction. But really what is escrow? Escrow is an arrangement where you use a “third party” (somebody who is neither the buyer or seller) to hold something of value. That third party helps to make the transaction safer by ensuring that both the buyer and seller meet their obligations.
Ideally, the escrow provider is a disinterested (or neutral) third party who doesn’t care whether the buyer or seller comes out ahead. The job of an escrow service is simply to ensure that everybody sticks to their end of the bargain.
 So you can see how important escrow is. They have their hand in every moving part of the sale. If you pick the wrong escrow company they can make the transaction difficult and even worse costly!  Make sure you do your homework and pick the right Escrow for the job!
If you have questions just call me at 951-310-6920 or schedule a time to talk online and Click Here.

Step 5 What is Title and Why do I Need it

Lets start and ask what is title exactly. Land is as old as time itself. Like the structures built on it, land is “real property”, meaning that it can’t be moved or hidden. Because real property is valuable, many people want to claim ownership. “Titles” came about as a means of legally proving who owns the property.
Through the year, a parcel of property may change hands dozens of times. At any point along the chain of ownership, problems may arise that cast a “cloud” over a title, putting a claim of ownership in doubt.  Examples include:
  • Long lost relatives or past owners could show up, sometimes from long ago, with a claim to the property that supersedes yours.
  • Sometimes people fraudulently sell houses that don’t belong to them. For example, the husband of a divorcing couple could forge the signature of his wife, and abscond with the proceeds of the sale. In a court of law, the rights of the wife could be upheld and the property could go to her, no matter how much money an unsuspecting purchaser had placed in the house.
  • To obtain loans, people often use property as collateral(security against nonpayment). If someone doesn’t pay back a loan, the lender holding the lien has a legal right to sell the property to get the money to repay the loan—even if the house has since sold to a new owner. The lien on the house if the lender’s claim to the property as payment on the debt. Unless the debt is repaid and the lien released, the lien stays with the house even when it changes ownership.
  • With today’s booming refinance and home equity markets, lenders’ interest in properties has increased exponentially and both lenders and county recorders are challenged to keep up with the documentation. It’s more likely than ever that an unrecorded or unreleased interest in your property could be out there, making title insurance more important now than ever.
  • An easement is a right to use the land of another for a special purpose. For example, the city may have plans to build a sewer line sometime in the future. If the sewer line runs through the back of your yard, and if the city has an easement on the underground portion of your property, this might cause you to lose your prize roses, or prevent you from building a pool in your back yard.
  • If a homeowner fails to pay property taxes, local, state or federal tax authorities can obtain a lien on the home, which gives the government a claim to that property in case of nonpayment of debt. If the owner sells the home without settling the tax lien, the tax authority can legally ask the new homeowner to pay the original homeowner’s back taxes. And if the new homeowner fails to comply, he could lose his new home.
  • How do you protect yourself from mistakes, fraud and other complications? Through title insurance.  It protects your claim to your property from potential problems caused by irregularities that may have occurred in the past.  Dollar for dollar, it’s one of the most cost-efficient forms of insurance for home-owners. A one-time premium covers you against legal problems that could cost tens of thousands of dollars—and even the loss of your home.—for as long as you own your property.
So Like the previous section do your homework to find a good prompt Title Company! If you have any questions just call me at 951-310-6920 or Click Here to schedule a time to talk online.

Step 6 Preparing Your House for Market


The big key here is that first impressions are lasting impressions and this is the most important part of the sale!
Your major role as a seller will be to make your home as attractive as possible to potential buyers. The time, effort and limited financial investment involved can give you the competitive edge needed to sell your home when you want – at the price you want.


Since the exterior of your home is the first thing a prospective buyer sees, a little time and effort can make a big difference in the impression your home creates. And pay big dividends when the sale is made.
Use this check list to make sure your home’s exterior looks its best:
  • Lawn is well cut and neatly trimmed around the walks and drive.
  • Flower garden is weeded.
  • Shrubs are trimmed and dead trees and branches are eliminated.
  • All debris is disposed of and toys and lawn equipment are neatly stored.
  • Fences and gates are repaired and repainted if necesary.
  • The roof, gutters and downspouts are in good repair.
  • Driveways and sidewalks are washed down and checked for cracking and crumbling.
A SPOTLESS INTERIOR WILL REINFORCE YOUR HOME’S GOOD FIRST IMPRESSION If your home’s exterior looks clean, orderly and in good repair, that’s the impression your house will first convey.If you have planned to paint the house within the coming year, consider painting the house before showing it. A new paint job, well done, will normally enhance the sale value a good deal more than the cost of the paint.

Interior dirt and clutter can obscure your home’s good points, so start with a full house cleaning from top to bottom. Store unused or unnecessary items in closets and storage areas or hold a garage sale. Eliminate clutter and your home will look more spacious – an important selling point.
Take an inspection tour of your home, observing it as a potential buyer would.
  • Walls are clean and free of smudges, fingerprints and dents.
  • Woodwork and wallpaper are inspected for problem areas; wallpaper is cleaned and woodwork is waxed.
  • Badly worn furniture is temporarily stored in family’s or neighbor’s attic or basement.
  • Curtains and drapes are freshly laundered or cleaned.
  • Rugs and carpets are shampooed. Floors are waxed.
  • Loose doorknobs, sticking doors, windows and warped drawers are repaired.
  • Leaky faucets are fixed. Water discoloration in sink is eliminated.
  • Loose stair banisters are tightened and steps are free of objects.
  • Light fixtures are in good working order. Discolored or cracked switch plates are replaced.
  • Closets, shelves and drawers are organized to display spaciousness.
  • Clothing is hung neatly and shoes and other objects are neatly arranged.
  • Bathrooms are sparkling clean. Tub and shower caulking is repaired.
  • Bedrooms are neat. Bedspreads and curtains are attractive.
  • The kitchen is clean and tidy, including cupboards, stove and oven.
  • The basement, attic and garage are clean and well organized.
  • Mirrors, picture frames and glasses covering pictures are clean.
  • Mirrors are strategically placed to create an impression of added space in problem areas.
  • Lamp shades are in good condition.
  • Electrical connections are plugged in.
  • Consider painting walls and replacing carpeting if cleaning doesn’t do the trick.
OVER-IMPROVING DOESN’T PAYIt is also important to keep lighting in mind when you show your home. Good lighting will make your home seem more cheery and spacious.

Don’t plan major improvements on your home. Most home buyers want to make their own major changes. You are usually wiser to sell them the potential – at a price they can afford.
Showing your home is all important to its sale, and there are many ways you can make sure its done successfully!


  • The television and radio are turned off or low enough to allow the salesperson and buyer(s) to talk, free of disturbances.
  • Children and pets are sent outdoors to play or otherwise entertained to eliminate confusion and to keep the prospect’s attention focused positively on your house.
  • Bad odors are eliminated. Air freshener is used before the potential buyer arrives, especially if you have pets or if the house has been closed up for some time.
  • The house has adequate lighting (during daytime drapes are open; at night plenty of lights are on, including the porch light).
  • Wood is stored next to the fireplace. In winter a fire is lit.
  • The kitchen sink is free of dishes.
  • Magazines and children’s toys are in order.
  • Plants have been watered and look healthy.
  • Fresh flowers are arranged tastefully around the house.
  • Be courteous, but don’t force conversation with the potential buyer(s).


Never apologize for the appearance of your home.
 Emphasize the features of your home.

Step 7 Marketing My Property

The goal to marketing your home is to expose it to as many buyers as possible because we all know the more buyers we expose the home to the more chances we have of getting an offer and in many cases multiple offers. So how to we do that? Here is a list of some ways to advertise your property in today’s market.
  1. Place a For Sale By Owner Sign in your front yard.
  2. Design a catchy flyer, Optional add: financial options for the buyers, local school ratings, number of parks near by, number of eatery’s near by etc…
  3. Place an add on major websites, newspapers ect…
  4. Hold an Open House and place signs all throughout the neighborhood and major intersections.
  5. Create a Single property website.
  6. Professional photography (first impressions)
  7. Professional Video of property
  8. Advertise on Social Media.
  9. Tell all your friends and family.
  10. Go knock your neighborhood and ask neighbors who they know.


I hope I gave you the information you need to sell your home for top dollar and to be protected in the process. Chances are you may still have a few questions and I want you to know I am here to help. Reach out to me at 951-310-6920 or Click Here and schedule a time to talk online. And remember “You Came, You Saw, You Sold!”