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Selling a House For Sale by Owner in a Slow Market

These selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market tips may be new, or unfamiliar to you. Whether you are a for sale by owner or listed with a Realtor, these seller concessions may give you an edge over your competition.

Before proceeding, please read this Disclaimer Page.

Your main concern is to, sell my property, not Bob and Shirley's house down the street.

So, what can you do? The following tips for selling a house for sale by owner during a market downturn may help.

Selling a House For Sale by Owner in a Slow Market Overview

It is important that any suggested ideas about selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market concerning home buyer incentives, be examined and checked for legality, before offering to a buyer.

Please check with either your real estate Lawyer, Mortgage Lender, or Mortgage Broker first, before proceeding with any of the following tips.

Please either select one of the thumbnail photo links below or read the rest of this page first and then select a link of your choice.

Selling a House For Sale by Owner

in a Slow Market

You see it all the time. My property isn't sold, what can I do? The answer from your local friendly real estate professional? You have to reduce your price!

Hey, if you are overpriced, sure. If you aren't, why? Are we just going to keep reducing the price until we have a sale? How much is that going to cost you or me?

Selling a house in a slow market example. (I like examples) :)

You have an Appraisal done and your property is appraised for $275,000.00. You try selling for $275,000.00.

The market stinks and you have few lookers and nothing on paper. Time passes.

4 more weeks, "Price Reduced Again". Now you are asking $260,000.00

3 more months "Drastically Reduced" "Far Below Appraised Value" your sign riders read. $252,400.00!

3 more months pass..............

Then you receive a contract from a buyer who is rubbing his or her hands in glee. I'll give you $235,000.00, take it or leave it!

In desperation, you accept the contract and sell $40,000.00 below appraised value. OUCH!

What Happened?

Let me explain something before we get into some of those tips for selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market. Sometimes understanding how and why things happen can paint a clearer picture.

A Visitor's Testimony

I wanted to let you know that within the first hour of my open house yesterday I was offered my full asking price!

When the real estate selling market goes soft or slow, this is what goes on behind the scenes. Some people still have to move. There is always going to be competition when you are selling.

The problem is, now you have homes sitting on the market that would be already sold in a normal, or a seller's market.

Many properties come on the market. A few sell. Many more houses go for sale. A few sell. Now real estate in your area is over-saturated. In your neighborhood, there might be 50 houses for sale and 12 buyers looking.

The price reductions start. Slowly, although sometimes rapidly, the prices head downward. It's like a runaway train heading toward the bottom of a canyon.

Now there are 75 homes on the market and 15 qualified buyers. The runaway price reductions continue.

Not only are the home sellers getting worried, the Realtors are also feeling the pinch. They need to pay the mortgage and put food on the table also.

Many leave the industry and get a "real" job. Others start making visits to their listings. "Mr. and Mrs. Jones, things are tough. You are going to have to lower your price, if you want to sell" Choo, Choo! goes the runaway real estate train.

When a real estate market goes soft, this is what happens behind the scenes. The problem is you and I don't give a hoot. All we want to do is SELL!

Here is one of the selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market thoughts you should consider first.

Do I really need to sell? If no, just remove from the market and wait for conditions to change.

We Need a Carrot!

When that runaway train is heading down into the canyon, you and I may need a carrot to capture one of those ever dwindling number of buyers. Here are some more tips for selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market.

* Tips on using buyer incentives WARNING* Make sure you check to see if the ideas below are legal where you live. For an example, let's look at an illegal offer to a buyer. (At least where I live)

Let's say you offer a buyer your property for $30,000 over appraised value and $30,000.00 cash at closing. Don't Do It! This is illegal. This is also known as mortgage fraud.

There is some argument that as long as you disclose this in the contract it is legal. OK. Let's say it is. Guess what? The lending institution isn't going to approve the mortgage, so what's the point?

The following are a few selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market buyer incentives you might consider.You will find the links to each incentive at the bottom of this page.

  •  Pay the Buyer's Mortgage for 3 - 6 Months

  •  Pay the Buyer's Closing Costs

  •  Buy Down the Mortgage Interest Rate

  •  Offer a Mortgage Assumption

  •  Offer Seller Financing

  •  Offer a Sellers Home Warranty

 Offer an Upgrade or Extras to Buyer

Other selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market tips, involve checking out all the buyer incentive government programs that you can display, or advertise to a buyer. An example might be 100% financing. In Canada check out Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

In the U.S.A.

US Department of Housing and Urban Development


Federal Housing Administration

selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market

You Sound Like a Used Car Salesman Doug!

Yep, I do. Guess what. Car sales use these type of incentives all the time. Why? Because they work! Yep, you need a carrot sometimes. If it's a seller's market or even a balanced market, usually you don't need this type of marketing. When things get rough out there, it's time to turn the heat up.

New construction builders use these incentives quite often. The reason is twofold. They have to move many houses during the year.

They also build "spec" homes that they have to move, as they are usually paying interest every month that the house doesn't sell.

They also usually have lots of competition from other builders with similar products to sell. Hmmm....just like the car dealers. "BUY MINE!" "NO BUY MINE!"

If you wish to check out how to do any or all of the ideas above, just click on the link. Again, make sure that any incentives you use are legal in your area.

Sounds Expensive!

Some of these incentives can run into some serious money. You have to look at the costs involved and decide if the cost is worth it to you. Remember, we are talking about tough market conditions.

Here is a thought. You have those 15 buyers looking at those 75 homes. If your property has the extra hook it might just be your house that sells. For the most part, you are looking for "special case" buyers.

A special case buyer might be someone that is tight on budget. However, as an example, if you buy down the mortgage interest rate for 3 years, thus lowering the buyer's monthly payments, that buyer may just choose your home over your neighbors.

In order to compete, your neighbor would have to lower the price of their house a great deal, to match the buy down you offer. I give an example on the page that deals with that. You might be shocked at the number!

Remember selling a house for sale by owner in a slow market also requires lots of marketing with perhaps newspaper ads, lots of signs, open houses, perhaps some flyers etc. Don't forget to market your property on the best For Sale by Owner Website as well.

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