Mortgages & Home Loans Real Estate Resources Selling Your Home The Best Ways To Sell a House in Today's Market These days, sellers have plenty of options By Aly J. Yale Aly J. Yale Twitter Aly J. Yale is the homebuying, home loans, and mortgages expert for The Balance. With over 10 years of experience as a freelance writer and journalist, Aly has also contributed to online media outlets including Forbes, The Motley Fool, CreditCards.com, and The Simple Dollar, with areas of focus covering real estate, mortgages, and related financial topics. She holds a bachelor's of science in communication from Texas Christian University. learn about our editorial policies Updated on May 23, 2022 Reviewed by Andy Smith Reviewed by Andy Smith Andy Smith is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), licensed realtor and educator with over 35 years of diverse financial management experience. He is an expert on personal finance, corporate finance and real estate and has assisted thousands of clients in meeting their financial goals over his career. learn about our financial review board Fact checked by Katie Turner Fact checked by Katie Turner Katie Turner is an editor, fact checker, and proofreader. Katie gained experience at McKinsey by fact-checking content about business, finance, and economic trends. At Dotdash, she began as a fact checker for Investopedia, eventually joining both Investopedia and The Balance as a fact checker, ensuring the accuracy of information across a variety of financial topics. learn about our editorial policies Share Tweet Pin Email In This Article View All In This Article Option 1: Using a Real Estate Agent Option 2: Using a Discount Agent Option 3: Using an iBuyer Option 4: Selling the Home Yourself Option 5: Trading It In Making the Choice Photo: Philip Spears / Getty Images Not long ago, if you wanted to sell your home, you called a real estate agent. Now, thanks to technology and the ever-evolving state of the real estate industry, sellers have a range of options. You can stick with the tried-and-true method of using an agent or try out brand-new methods like iBuyers and trade-in programs that promise to save you money, time, or hassle—or all three. Each method of selling your home comes with advantages as well as downsides. The right choice for you depends on your real estate know-how, how much you’re hoping to get for your property, and more. Learn about your options. Option 1: A Traditional Real Estate Agent The most common way to sell a home, used in 90% of sales, is to use a local real estate agent. The agent will list the home, market it, and coordinate showings with other agents and potential buyers. They will also help you evaluate offers, negotiate terms with the buyer, and ensure the deal goes through. They may even attend your closing appointment with you. Traditional real estate agents typically operate on a commission-based fee model. The seller’s agent is compensated at a percentage of the final sales price, which they then split with the buyer’s agent. For example, a 6% commission on a $200,000 home would be a $12,000 fee. Pros and Cons of Traditional Real Estate Agents Pros Lots of help and hand-holding throughout the process Access to agent marketing tools and listing services Assistance with negotiations and contracts Connections to local vendors and industry partners (e.g., inspectors and contractors) Less work on your part Cons Costly (about 6% of the sales price) Less control over pricing and marketing strategies Requires cleaning, staging, and photographing your home Requires showings and open houses Using a real estate agent is best if you: Want help and guidance during the sales processAren’t well-versed in real estateWant to ensure your home sells for top-dollar Option 2: A Flat-Fee or Discount Agent Some real estate agencies, such as Redfin, Clever, and Reali, provide agents that work on a flat-fee or discounted-fee structure. These agents typically help you list your home but may not offer the same amount of hands-on help a full-service agent does. Discount agent fees vary by provider but are sometimes as low as 1%. Pros and Cons of Flat-Fee or Discount Agents Pros Cheaper than traditional agents Access to agent marketing tools and listing services Offers some assistance with negotiations and contracts Cons May come with limited services Often requires you to do more of the legwork Requires cleaning, staging, and photographing your home Requires showings and open houses May need to pay additional fee for buyer's agent Using a flat-fee agent is best if you: Want some help but are willing to do some of the work on your own Are somewhat familiar with the process of selling a home Want to save on agent commissions Option 3: An iBuyer iBuyers, a fairly new option for home sellers, are online companies that purchase homes directly from their owners, usually via a cash offer. After entering information about your property on an iBuyer website, you’ll get an offer, either instantly or within a few days. If you choose to accept it, you can select a closing date and collect your money. If you don’t, you are free to solicit other offers or list your home on the open market. These types of sales are not very common yet; less than 1% of sellers used an iBuyer in 2021. Popular iBuyer companies include Opendoor, Offerpad, and Redfin Now. iBuyer Pros and Cons Pros Can sell online without meeting an agent in person No staging or showing the home Fast (often instant) sales No commissions or agent fees Cons Sale prices are typically lower than on the open market Must be able to provide many details about your home Not available in all markets Not available on all types of properties An iBuyer is best if you: Want to close quickly and collect your cashWant to avoid staging and showing your homeAre fairly technologically savvy Option 4: Sell the Home Yourself You always have the option to sell your home yourself, known as an FSBO (“for sale by owner”). About 7% of sellers choose this option. To do this, you’ll need to market your house, possibly by listing it on Zillow or an FSBO-focused website, and then coordinate showings with buyers and their agents. You’ll also need to handle the negotiations, contracts, and other details of the sale on your own—or enlist a real estate attorney for help. Pros and Cons of Selling Your Own Home What We Like Total control over the pricing, marketing, and showing of your home Flexibility in timing No commissions or agent fees What We Don't Like No access to marketing tools or listing services Lots of legwork on your part May take longer to sell May get a lower sales price May require a real estate attorney or some level of personal real estate knowledge FSBO is best if you are: Very familiar with the home selling processComfortable pricing and marketing your homeNot in a huge rush to sell Option 5: Trade It In If you already own a home but are looking to sell it and buy a new home, one option is to work with a company that will let you “trade-in” your property in exchange for your next one. A few examples include Opendoor and Knock. In both cases, the companies will buy your existing home, sell it on your behalf, and use that money to help you fund your new property. Pros and Cons of Trading in Your Home Pros Makes buying and selling at the same time easier Lets you avoid two mortgages Can work with new construction or resale properties Cons Only available in certain markets and with certain builders May not earn as much profit as much as on the open market Trading in is best if you: Already own a home and want to sell it and buy anotherDon’t want to deal with the hassles of listing, showing, and closing on your old homeLive in one of the select markets where these programs are offered Making the Choice Overwhelmed by the options? You don’t have to make a hard-and-fast decision right away. Instead, talk to a few agents, get quotes from several iBuyers, and scope out your local market. Think hard about how much time and knowledge you bring to the table before deciding which pathway to take. Was this page helpful? Thanks for your feedback! Tell us why! Other Submit Sources The Balance uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. National Association of Realtors. "2021 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers," Page 6.