Selling your Property By Yourself: What Risks?

Selling your property by yourself is certainly a choice but it comes with its own risks too. The focus is on the risk. Depending on how high the risk is, most people would lean towards the most efficient solution being professional help and guidance.

As an analogy, when you are unwell, you have a choice of going to see your doctor or self-medicating. Depending on the severity of your health issue - in other words how high your health risk is - most people would agree that going to see a doctor for help and advice would be the best and most efficient choice.

It is the same with real estate. We would suggest you first consider how high a risk it is for you to sell your property. To answer this, you will need to define what are the most riskiest areas. Here are some examples:

The Risk of Losing Money
Quite possibly one of any seller's biggest concerns is selling their property at the right price. The possibility of misevaluating your property and marketing it online at the wrong price and/or misnegotiating with the buyer once you receive an offer can lead to underselling your property

The Risk of Wasting a lot of Time
Selling your property is a tremendous time commitment. With all the steps needed to successfully sell your property (you can find more about these steps HERE), if you do not have access to a large network of serious, pre-targeted, well-qualified buyers, then your reduced scope of available buyers increases the time it will take you to find the right buyer, therefore burdening your sale even more so

The Risk of Feeling Overwhelmed
In addition to the previous risk mentioned above, by advertising on social and professional platforms that are mismatched with your property, you increase the probability of attracting the wrong types of buyers. These buyers may be more curious rather than serious buyers. Dealing with unqualified buyers takes up a lot of time and can feel very overwhelming

The Risk of Doing a Lot for Little Return
To attract buyers with the aim of booking viewings of your property, there is a lot of preparation work to do upfront. This includes collecting documentation, writing content, taking high quality photos and promoting your property on a variety of real estate and social platforms in the best manner possible. The amount of time and energy spent preparing this work can be very frustrating in the end when it attracts no or very little attention

The Risk of Missing Substantial Opportunities
Once having prepared all the work mentioned in the previous paragraph, if you do not have access to certain national and international, professional real estate platforms - platforms on which serious buyers spend most of their time looking for properties - you will hinder your performance by automatically passing on some highly viable options, both in quantity and quality

The Risk of Disappointment
When a seller opts to sell their property by themselves, more often than not it is because they are trying to get as much bang for their buck. Although it may sound like rational thinking, in many cases, there is a natural tendency to overvalue your own property. This leads to overpriced properties remaining on the market for too long, which in turn discourages new buyers from considering them as they believe there must be something wrong with them - why else would they still be on the market? Unless they are overpriced perhaps?

The Risk of Real Estate Unfamiliarity
As much as buying a property is a much more complex process than buying a loaf of bread at a bakery, the same goes for selling your own property by yourself. If you are unaware of which questions you should specifically ask a buyer, what information you need and what is expected of you - as a seller - then this could also be a serious hindrance during and after the sales transaction

The Risk of Low Quality Feedback
When showing a buyer around a property, it is vital to get their feedback. If you take it upon yourself to show buyers around your own property, this feedback can be easily distorted. On one hand, most buyers do not wish to offend, so they compensate by creating an overoptimistic picture in your mind; on the other hand, they are over-critical, therefore undermining your own property evaluation. Low quality feedback can lead to bad choices

The Risk of Lacking Objectivity
There is usually at least one specific reason that made you decide to sell your property. In the majority of cases, there is emotion directly or indirectly linked to the decision - for instance, a change in relationship status, a passing, a growing family, starting a new job, leaving an old job, and the list goes on. This can often lead to sellers being unwilling to welcome feedback objectively

The Risk of Lack of Market and Legal Knowledge
Despite good intent, if you don’t have a good legal understanding of the transaction process, the documents that are legally required and specific obligations tied to geographic locations and the properties themselves, this may misinform a buyer during negotiations, which you may be held responsible for later in the transaction process. In this case, this could lead to renegotiating the initially agreed price and/or adding specific clauses to the sales contract

The Risk of Lacking Experience
There may come a time during the transaction process where you may consider you are at a dead-end. There are many areas in which this could happen. This can be quite devastating, especially if you are at the latter stages of the transaction process and you really do not have the time nor the energy to start all over again. However, there may also be solutions to help alleviate such stress points in the process that you are unaware of

The Risk of Making a Serious Mistake
Last, but certainly not least, when selling a property, there are many common traps - and some uncommon ones too - to avoid. You will be able to find this list of traps in a future article as the list is long and warrants an article of its own. Although this final remark is focussed on these common and uncommon traps, all the risks cited in this article could also lead to making a serious mistake as well

If you consider any of these risks to be high, then we would recommend you seek a good and professional real estate agent. However, using a real estate agent is your choice. You now know the risks.

The Nice Homes Team
9th February 2024


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