Pros and Cons of For Sale By Owner Transactions

For Sale By Owner (FSBO) transactions in Washington State, like in many other places, come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages.

When clients come to us with a for sale by owner transaction, usually the seller and buyer are identified and the pertinent terms have been agreed to, primarily the price.

Here’s a breakdown of some of the pros and cons of selling a home without a real estate agent in Washington:


  • Cost Savings: One of the primary motivations for choosing FSBO is the potential to save on real estate agent commissions, which can typically range from 5% to 6% of the home’s sale price. In Washington State, where home prices can be high, this can result in significant savings.
  • Control: As the seller, you have full control over the entire selling process. You can set the price, decide when to show the property, and negotiate directly with potential buyers.
  • Flexibility: You can adapt quickly to market changes. If you want to lower the price or make changes to your listing, you don’t need to go through a third party.


  • Limited Exposure: One of the biggest disadvantages of FSBO is the reduced exposure your property will receive compared to listings represented by real estate agents. Agents have access to multiple listing services (MLS) and extensive networks, which can attract more potential buyers.
  • Pricing Challenges: Determining the right price can be challenging without access to market data and a professional’s expertise. Overpricing can deter potential buyers, while underpricing can result in a loss of value.
  • Complex Legalities: Real estate transactions involve numerous legal documents and laws. Without an agent’s or attorney’s guidance, you might miss important details, which could lead to legal issues or disputes.

In conclusion, selling a home as a FSBO in Washington State can be a cost-effective option, but it comes with its share of challenges, particularly in terms of marketing, pricing, legalities, and negotiation. Consider your knowledge of the real estate market, your comfort level with handling complex transactions, and the time you can invest in the process before deciding whether FSBO is the right choice for you. It may be beneficial to consult with a real estate attorney if you choose this route to ensure a smooth and legally compliant transaction.

If you are looking for an attorney to assist you with a for sale by owner transaction, visit us online at or give us a call or text at (206) 408-8158.

Contact us:

19803 1st Avenue S.
Suite 200
Normandy Park, WA 98148

T (206) 408-8158
F (206) 374-2810


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