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What Does FSBO Mean, and Should You Try It?

What Does FSBO Mean, and Should You Try It?

Most people consider using the services of a real estate professional in the process of buying and selling homes and properties. There’s a common misconception using a real estate professional during this transaction process means paying a big old commission to said real estate professional.

“FSBO” stands for “For Sale By Owner.” Pronounced “Fiz-boh”, this term refers to when a homeowner opts to sell his or her home without using a real estate agent. Without the aid of a real estate professional, the seller, more or less, assumes all responsibilities of the agent or broker. And that can be a big headache.

However, this isn’t to say there aren’t any advantages to a FSBO transaction.

Advantages of FSBO

Selling your home by yourself has its advantages. For one thing, it’s likely you’ll save money on commission. Even though there’s no real fixed commission rate, 6% is a common figure.

Some sellers are experienced in the process of buying and selling houses. For these individuals in particular, a FSBO property might actually be beneficial in terms of a financial decision. With ample knowledge about real estate, sellers can save money.

Disadvantages of FSBO

The benefits of FSBO are fairly limited, so the disadvantages of FSBO outweigh them.  Pure FSBO homes will not appear on the Multiple Listing Service agents use to find homes for sale. That means a FSBO home will be less visible to the world of buyers!

As a seller, you’ll likely save money only on the listing agent’s commission. The buyer is likely to have an agent, which FSBOmeans you might end up paying commission to them, depending on the Buyer Broker agreement.

Here’s another tricky situation. Imagine a court case where your “opponent” has a lawyer, and you don’t. Translate this situation to  real estate transactions, and it’s pretty sticky right? The buyer’s agent is working to get the best deal possible for his or her client. Who is on your side to get the best possible deal for you?

Consider this: there’s a reason people get paid to do what they do. Professionals have training that they constantly use, which is to say they cultivate skills. Yes, you can absolutely figure out how to DIY your own real estate transaction, just like you can figure out how to do your own car repairs or a variety of other DIY projects. But if you’re not a plumber and you don’t know anything about pipes, should you try and fix them on your own?

A licensed real estate professional, agent, or broker has the tools and training that enable them to do their job better and faster. Just like a mechanic or a plumber. Is the money you may (possibly) save on commission worth your time? Consider hiring a listing agent, or real estate professional to help.

Why Work With a Buyers Agent

It may be tempting to “go it alone” in an effort to save money, but in our experience, the stress, unforeseen obstacles, and time on the market experienced by sellers is not worth it. They often wind up hiring a real estate agent in the end after all, after having wasted precious time, money, and resources. Working with a Buyer’s Agent means you’ll have a personal ally in your real estate transactions.

By hiring a qualified professional from the beginning, most sellers will actually end up saving money, as their agent will know all the tricks and tips to sell a home quickly at top dollar.

What’s more? A Buyer Agent can show you every home listed in the REALTOR®’s Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and For Sale By Owner (FSBO) properties. Additionally, a Buyer Agent can show you builder models to select your own, brand-new properties and unlisted homes.

Real Estate Experts

At Real Estate Experts, we’re top listing agents.  We have been providing all of these benefits for our clients for the past 20 years. Our seasoned team members work together to provide outstanding service to our buyers and sellers, while developing a unique partnership to better care for our clients.

If you are looking to buy or sell, let one of our top realtors assist you today If you are interested in learning about properties available in them in the greater Triangle area, visit us online.  Call us today at 919-813-6449 or e-mail us at  [email protected] for additional information.  

Rent to Own Homes: the Who, What, When, Where, and Why

Rent to Own Homes: the Who, What, When, Where, and Why

Most people aren’t familiar with the option to rent-to-own homes, instead more are familiar with rent-to-own appliances. Like leasing a car to own, you can rent a house to own. Let’s break down rent-to-own agreements, and how they benefit both the seller and buyer.

Rent to Own Homes: the Basics

Rent-to-own homes are similar to car leases that end in ownership. The seller of the house gives the renter or tenant the option to buy the property sometime in the future. The time of sale is typically one to three years in the future with the price agreed upon at the beginning of the contract.

Essentially, the lease agreement on the rent to own home is the same as a standard lease but there’s a very important addition. This addition is termed “option money” which is the money tenants/buyers can use against the house in the future. Option money might be anywhere from 15-20% of the rent fee for the house. So, if you’re renting a house that’s priced at $1200 per month, you’d be paying $1440 per month, with the additional $240 going toward the purchase of the house at a later date.

Your rent money works for you, here, because it acts as a credit which will reduce the final purchase price of the house.

Sample Terms of a Rent to Own Contract Otherwise Called a Lease Purchase Agreement

Rent-to-own contracts aren’t one size fits all, but there are a handful of purchase terms you can expect to be present.

  • Option money: this is a one time fee that allows a buyer to purchase the house in the future. Some contracts present this as an option for tenants to purchase later on, but not an obligation to do so.
  • Purchase price: the price of the home will surely be in the contract of the rent-to-own agreement. The seller will determine the price.
  • Rent: payment for the monthly fee of renting the house will be determined in the contract, too. Rent in a rent-to-own situation is typically higher than what the rent would normally be, but that’s because the buyer is putting money away to purchase the house later on.
  • Maintenance: it depends on whether the seller or buyer will pay for maintenance costs. This will surely be determined in the contract. The potential buyer may be responsible for maintenance, repairs, and association fees or insurance. It’s also possible the seller will retain responsibility for these things, though the buyer will need renter’s insurance.
  • Purchasing the property: at the end of the lease or agreement, the buyer can purchase the house or opt not to purchase it. However, should the buyer decide not to purchase the property, they do have to give up the money paid until that point in time. Should they decide to purchase the property, the end of the lease is the time to do so. They can then apply for financing and finally purchase the home!

Advantages for the Landlord

Of course, there are advantages for the landlord in rent-to-own situations. For one thing, sellers and landlords of rent-to-own homes have the benefit of long-term renters. Anyone entering into a rent-to-own agreement will be around for a while; after all, they’re putting money down on the house. They’ll want to stick around, at least for the terms of their agreement. Remember, that’s around one to three years, so the landlord is guaranteed a revenue stream at the very minimum.

On the subject of a revenue stream, landlords also get the added benefit of no gap-time between renters. Since the tenants are hoping to purchase the house at the end of their lease (or they have the option to), landlords don’t have to worry their property will be left vacant for long periods of time. What’s more? They know the tenants are motivated renters, which is to say their behavior as tenants will be top notch.

If you’re thinking of renting out your home, Real Estate Experts would be happy to discuss how we manage properties and our fees.  We pride ourselves on being different and providing services that go above and beyond.

Advantages for the Renter or Buyer

Being a tenant in a rent-to-own home isn’t without benefits, either. Rent becomes an investment, for one thing. Your money begins to work for you because you are actively saving towards the purchase price of the home.

Poor credit history may not be an issue, either. Even if you have bad credit, a rent-to-own agreement gives you the flexibility to build up your credit, and repair bad credit. As there isn’t a finance company or bank involved, credit becomes less of an issue. You also build equity towards home ownership, which is valuable of course.

There is a one very important thing a buyer needs to know.  There are no real estate forms for a rent to own homes, or a lease purchase, situation.  Because the agreement can be tailored to whatever the buyer and landlord negotiate, this contract has to be drafted by a Real Estate Attorney.  This is done at the buyers expense unless you can negotiate something with the landlord.

Real Estate Experts

Determining if rent-to-own is the right choice for you can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Working alongside a great real estate professional can help you decide if the property is a good investment. With a professional’s help, the rent-to-own agreement will be thorough and all details will be ironed out carefully.

At Real Estate Experts, we are fierce representatives for our clients and known as expert buyer agents.  Contact us and see how we can help you find just the home you are looking for. To see Real Estate Experts’ newest listings, click here, and feel free to give us a call anytime at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  [email protected].

Selling Your Home? Help Your Home Show Better With These Quick Fixes

Selling Your Home? Help Your Home Show Better With These Quick Fixes

Help your home show better with quick fixes while you wait for the next showing…

Even though you want to sell your home so you can move into your new home, it can be hard to show your home while you’re still living there. Hearing others’ opinions of your home is stressful, especially because you have memories, emotions, and feelings tied to the house. There’s no telling how many times your house will be shown, either. Some properties go through one showing, and others have many. While you’re waiting for your home to sell or the next showing, there are some quick fixes you can make to help your home show better.

Depersonalize Your Home to Help it Show Better

It’s hard to encourage someone to take away their personal items, even if they’re listing their home for sale. But it truly is important to detach yourself from your home, and from thinking about it as your home. Family photos, monograms, and even certain decorations do need to go. With your personal things on display, it’s hard for potential buyers to see themselves in the house.

Your realtor or real estate professional of choice may be hesitant to remind you of this, but depersonalizing your home truly is critical.

Update Your Lighting to Help Your Home Show in a Better Light

Burnt out bulbs, dirty windows, and dim lighting can detract from your home. Not everyone likes soft white lights in the bedroom, or funky colored bulbs attached in a bonus room. Adding brighter bulbs (or even energy efficient ones) will improve the way your home shows, that’s for sure.

While you’re at it, why not clean the windows? You’d be amazed at what builds up on them. You can also check for broken window seals, too. Having checked your lighting, you’ll know where potential buyers might make a note of issues in the house.

Natural lighting will also show your home in a way that helps bring out your home’s strengths.

Organize, Organize, Organize

You never know what a buyer is going to want to see in your home during a showing. They may open closets, cabinets, or drawers to check out the storage space. You don’t want them to find dirt, belongings, or otherwise that might take away from their opinion of the house.

You’re moving anyway, so why not take this time to pare down your belongings? Getting rid of junk, memorabilia, and generic stuff will not only make your move easier; paring down will help buyers get a genuine feel for the home and be able to see themselves in it easier.

Boost Your Curb Appeal to Make a Great First Impression When There’s a Showing

First impressions are important. It’s hard to stress that enough! But what is the first impression of your home saying to potential buyers?

Quick fixes can help your home show better, however if you need to focus and funnel money into a certain area, outside is the way to go. When a potential buyer sees the home for the first time, they may fall in love with it before they even head inside. Taking a chance on presenting your home without great curb appeal can sabotage the potential of a sale.

Real Estate Experts





One of the best ways to show your home in the best light is to have it properly staged by your favorite real estate professional. At Real Estate Experts, we have great experience staging homes and if it’s necessary, we’ll bring in an outsider to help us spruce up a home for an excellent showing. We’d love to help you show your home home in the best light. What’s more? We have a great list of inexpensive home staging tips.

Visit to learn how we integrate home staging and now, virtual staging, into our listings. If you’re interested in staging your home, don’t hesitate to reach out. Give us a call at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  [email protected] to find out more about living in the Triangle, and visit our website to view current homes for sale in the area.


Learn How to Drive Your Realtor Crazy

Learn How to Drive Your Realtor Crazy

So, you’d like to drive your realtor crazy?

Fortunately, there are numerous ways to accomplish this, without even trying. While you may not realize that certain habits are frustrating to your favorite real estate professional, they can be detrimental to the potential of you selling your home.

  1. Don’t Take Things Personally

It’s your home. Of course you have strong feelings and emotions tied to your property! After all, some of the biggest events in your life can happen there. It may be a place you’ve lived all your life. It may be the place your baby took her first steps. Of course you feel strongly about your home. However, it’s important not to take the advice or suggestions and opinions about your home personally.  As a seller, you need to have a tough exterior and not let things get to you.  Remember, once you have decided to sell your home, it’s not your home anymore.  It is important to do what you need to do to get the job done.

How it’s decorated, the colors of your home, the layout… when your house is on the market, it’s no longer your “home” but a representation of a property you’re trying to sell.

  1. Don’t Fight Having a Pre-Sale Inspection and Making the Necessary Repairs

This may seem like a no brainer, but not everyone is aware of the importance of disclosing things that are broken or not working in your home. The real estate professional you’re working with is your ally, and you want them to be able to advocate in your best interest. Addressing needed repairs — like rotten siding, moisture in a crawl space or roof repairs, up front can save you time negotiating the contract on your home and with the pain and sometimes suffering of the inspection and repair process.  The better shape your home is in, the more likely buyers are going to love it.

Another thing to consider while we’re on the subject of flaws: don’t refuse to make repairs. You can also consider adjusting the home price in order to satisfy the buyers.

No home is perfect.  It is your agents job to create the wow factor when a buyer enters your home.  Your agent should know hot to spotlight the strengths of your home! Find out how home staging works in your favor with our checklist.

  1. Don’t Turn Down Showings

There’s no reason you should turn down a showing of your home. Sure, there are some extenuating circumstances like sick individuals, or very young children. If the house needs tidying up, do it. If the house needs cleaning, do it. Turning down a showing means potentially turning down a sale.  If you need to reschedule the showing, let your agent know so she or he can reach out to the other agent and make sure the showing happens.

  1. Don’t Stay Home During Showings

On the same topic of showing your home, there’s no reason you should be home during the showing. Having the owner of a home around while potential buyers are prospecting around the property can make the potential buyers uncomfortable. Wouldn’t you feel funny about having opinions on the home (negative or positive) in front of those who own it?

Additionally, it’s important to keep your pets in mind during home showings. If you have a dog, kindly remove it from the premises along with yourself. If you need to keep your cats shut in a room with all of their amenities in front of them, that’s something to put on your to-do list before a showing. No potential buyer wants to see, smell, or hear your pets. Regardless of how wonderful they are.

  1. Expecting Top Dollar Is Ok But Be Realistic

Tempting as it is to insist on a listing price, it’s imperative to get rid of that idea. Your real estate professional is your best ally here, again, because they know the market, your neighborhood, and they’re equipped with an analysis of  the area. We know you love your home, but allowing your real estate professional to list your home what they deem it worth will only benefit you in the long run.

  1. Be Flexible

Your real estate professional of choice wants to help you sell your house; let them! There’s no room for stubbornness here as that may turn sales away. The point is to sell your home!

Getting hung up on things like, requested repairs, whether a showing agent turned the lights off or making changes in response to the same repeated feedback, won’t help you achieve the goal of getting your home sold.  By allowing your Realtor to do their job will benefit you.

  1. Don’t Shoot the Messenger

Again, your realtor wants to help you sell your home. That’s both of your goals! If buyers have strange demands, your realtor isn’t at fault. If buyers have unreasonable terms, your realtor isn’t at fault. See the trend? Work with your Realtor, not against them. Trust their guidance, trust their professionalism, and remember: you both want to sell your house.

Real Estate Experts

Find out how Real Estate Experts can help you sell your home!


Worried About Being A First-Time Home Seller? Don’t! We’ve Got You Covered.

Worried About Being A First-Time Home Seller? Don’t! We’ve Got You Covered.

If you’re a first-time home seller, you’ll need these four tips…

Homeowners don’t often think about becoming a first-time home seller until they’re faced with the situation. All of a sudden, the starter home you’ve lived in for a few years becomes too small. Selling a home is a process like no other. Whether you’ve owned the home for five years or fifty, first-time home sellers need to consider some important things before beginning the process. Instead of being concerned with the excitement of a new home, sellers are concerned with maximizing profit and speed of sale.

The process can be overwhelming, but we’ve got you covered with these first-time home seller tips.

1. Hire a Great Real Estate Professional

If you’ve never been through the process of selling your home, it’s easy to think you may not need the assistance of a real estate professional. Buyer’s agents, Realtors, listing agents, or other real estate professionals are your best allies in selling your home, so why not take advantage of their services and benefits? first-time home seller

Repeat sellers know that a real estate professionals know their industry, so they’re likely to be able to negotiate better prices, faster sales, and help the process move seamlessly. While some repeat sellers learn the hard way, first-time home sellers don’t have to! There’s a common misconception that it will be pricey to use the services of a real estate professional. Wipe away your worry, because using a buyer’s agent is always in your best interest.

Here’s what a real estate professional can do to assist you in your home selling journey:

  • Price your home for sale
  • Help prepare your home for sale to create a Wow through home staging and more
  • Manage pre-sale inspections and repairs
  • Take high quality photos
  • Market your home broadly and effectively to buyers and Realtors
  • Use their network to connect you with local professionals like contractors, utility providers, and more
  • Effectively handle difficult negotiations

The list goes on!

2. Err on the Side of Caution: Don’t Overprice Your Home

Firstly, it’s easy to want to overprice your home. It’s your home! You have memories, cherished moments, and more within the confines of your home. However, others won’t see it that way. They’ll judge the home based on their needs and desires. What’s more, as a first-time home seller it may be tempting to overprice your home with the idea negotiations will bring the price down to an appropriate level. The idea is tempting, of course. But pricing too high is a turn-off for many buyers.

Your hired real estate professional will be better qualified to suggest a list price for your home. They know the market, they know how homes are selling in the area, so their opinion is valuable. They’ll know how to get you top-dollar for your property, too.

3. Let Your Home Make a Good First Impression

Curb appeal is important, as is the staging of your home for showings. However, if you haven’t put in the elbow grease to get your home ready to market, there’s a good chance your listing won’t be effective. You may turn off buyers by listing your home as-is. So, what can you do?

Be sure to get your home in order, spic-and-span. It should be in great condition once the property is listed. You can accomplish this in a few ways. Firstly, you can consider doing an pre-sale inspection before listing your home. That way, you’re armed with the knowledge of what repairs may be necessary, any flaws of the property, and what may need to be done to get your home market ready.

First impressions are, in fact, very important. Especially when buyers are concerned, because if there’s something that turns them off of a property they’re not likely to come back. Using a network of real estate professionals, you can accomplish stunning staging, professional grade photographs, and a welcoming atmosphere to show off your home. We’ve got you covered with great home staging tips. Use our home staging checklist to make sure your home is market ready.

4. The Most Money isn’t Always the Best Offer

While a high number on a check seems like a great outcome, it may not actually be. Even if the offer is high, the negotiations during the closing of the house won’t necessarily put everything in your favor.

Having a real estate professional on your side during this part of the process is crucial. If you’re looking at multiple offers, they can help you decide which is best to accept. There are other things to consider  in addition to price, such as:

  • due diligence monies
  • cash versus mortgage
  • timeline

There are other factors to consider when accepting an offer on your home, however these three are easily decided with the help of an experienced real estate professional.

Real Estate Experts

We, at Real Estate Experts, are top listing agents.  We have been providing all of these benefits for our clients for the past 20 years. Our seasoned team members work together to provide outstanding service to our buyers and sellers, while developing a unique partnership to better care for our clients.

If you are looking to buy or sell, let one of our top realtors assist you today! We can’t wait to help you find the perfect home in the Triangle area, or assist you in selling your property. We’d love to hear from you. Contact us today at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  [email protected]. Visit us online at

Dreaming of a backyard oasis? Check out these pool pros!

Dreaming of a backyard oasis? Check out these pool pros!

The warm weather is here, bringing backyard oasis-level relaxation to mind. Having a pool in your backyard sounds like a dream, right? One step outside your back door, and you’re ready for a full day poolside without having to head anywhere! No worrying if you have the kids’ favorite pool toys, snacks, or enough drinks to go around. All you have to do is head inside.

Having a pool in your backyard can be wonderful. It’s even better when you’re armed with all the information. Proper pool maintenance can be difficult if you’re not aware of all the aspects of pool ownership. What chemicals do you want, and when do you have to re-do your liner? The questions add up, and it can be murky waters navigating pool territory.

backyard pool

1005 Hidden Trail Court, Raleigh

Backyard Pool Cons

In some places, and in some cases, having a pool can be seen as a “con” of a potential home. This is especially true in cases where the potential buyers aren’t experienced pool owners. Regular maintenance can weigh heavy on people who own a home with a pool. You’ve got chemicals to worry about, cleaning, and eventual repair. Pools can take up a lot of backyard space, and in smaller yards that could be overwhelming. Families with young children might be especially leery of pools, too. According to Safekids Worldwide, drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children ages one to four.

While that might seem scary, there are lots of ways to safe guard your pool. Fencing with childproof locks are just one way to protect your family and your pool.

Another thing that can sway potential home buyers from a property with a pool is the added expense. If you’re not looking for the pool, you’re probably not looking for the financial stress either. However! Before you walk away too quickly, pool maintenance might not be as expensive as you think. While some people might spring for pool maintenance by a professional company, it’s not too hard to learn to do the maintenance yourself. You can slash that expense pretty quickly!

Location is also important to consider. In our area, the Triangle, there’s a lot of sun, and a lot of warm weather. But for some areas of the country, having a pool isn’t worth the effort for two short months of use every year.

backyard pool

1540 Sterling Lake Drive, Wake Forest

Let’s stray away from the negatives, and look at the pros of having your own backyard oasis.

Backyard Pool Pros

For starters, think about the aesthetics. Looking out over your backyard to see a beautiful patio, your children happily playing in the pool, and the bright Carolina blue sky is a sight for sore eyes.

In hot climates, pools can even add to resale value. Thank North Carolina, but our climate is often one that encourages people to seek out a nearby lake or pool spring, summer, and even into the fall. For some properties in areas where the climate is great for having a pool, some real estate professionals see a pretty penny increase in the selling price. We’re talking $10,000 or more, but it’s important to remember that this is in an area where “pool season” is longer than two short summer months.

Public pools are unfortunately notorious for passing around bugs or germs. Though not necessarily a deciding factor on a home, being able to take care of your pool the way you want to is a nice relief.

Real Estate Experts

All in all, choosing a property with a pool comes down to where you live, and the type of lifestyle you want to lead. But, choose the pool if it’s something you love. If you’re not going to be using it, there’s a good reason to turn away from a house with a pool. At Real Estate Experts, we’re happy to help you find the house of your dreams with a backyard oasis, or help you find the perfect home with a pool-less backyard.

We commit to providing our clients the best experience buying or selling homes. We want the process to be smooth for everyone involved. If you’re interested in buying or selling a home in the Triangle area, give us a call anytime at 919-813-6449 or send us an email to  [email protected].


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