6 Steps to Successfully Selling Your House By Owner in Chicago and Illinois


6 Steps to Successfully Selling Your House By Owner in Chicago and Illinois

Selling your house by owner, also known as For Sale By Owner (FSBO), can be a daunting task, especially if you’re doing it for the first time. However, with the right guidance and preparation, you can successfully sell your house without the help of a real estate agent. In this blog post, we’ll walk you through six essential steps to selling your house by owner in Chicago and Illinois. By following these steps, you’ll save thousands of dollars in real estate agent commissions and have full control over the sale of your property.

Step 1: Research the Local Market

Before you can successfully sell your house by owner, you need to have a good understanding of the local real estate market. This will help you determine the right price for your property and identify the best time to list it for sale. To research the local market, you can:

– Visit online real estate websites like Zillow, Trulia, and Redfin to see what similar homes in your area are selling for.
– Attend open houses in your neighborhood to get a feel for the competition.
– Consult with a local real estate agent or appraiser to get their opinion on the current market conditions.

By gathering this information, you’ll be better equipped to price your home competitively and attract potential buyers.

Step 2: Prepare Your Home for Sale

Before listing your home for sale, it’s essential to make sure it’s in the best possible condition. This will not only help you attract more potential buyers but also increase the chances of receiving a higher offer. Here are some tips to prepare your home for sale:

– Declutter and depersonalize your home. Remove personal items, such as family photos and memorabilia, to help potential buyers envision themselves living in the space.
– Make necessary repairs and improvements. Fix any issues that could deter potential buyers, such as leaky faucets, broken windows, or damaged flooring.
– Clean your home thoroughly. A clean and well-maintained home will make a better impression on potential buyers.
– Enhance your home’s curb appeal. Make sure your home’s exterior is inviting by trimming bushes, mowing the lawn, and adding some colorful flowers.

By taking the time to prepare your home for sale, you’ll increase the likelihood of receiving offers and selling your house quickly.

Step 3: Price Your Home Competitively

Pricing your home correctly is one of the most critical aspects of selling your house by owner. If you price your home too high, you risk alienating potential buyers and having your property sit on the market for an extended period. On the other hand, if you price your home too low, you could leave money on the table.

To price your home competitively, consider the following factors:

– The current market conditions in your area
– The prices of similar homes that have recently sold in your neighborhood
– The unique features and upgrades of your property

You can also use online tools, such as Zillow’s Zestimate or Redfin’s Estimate, to get a rough idea of your home’s value. However, keep in mind that these tools are not always accurate and should be used as a starting point rather than a definitive price.

Step 4: Market Your Home Effectively

To sell your house by owner, you’ll need to market your property effectively to reach as many potential buyers as possible. Here are some marketing strategies to consider:

– Create a professional-looking listing. Take high-quality photos of your home and write a compelling description that highlights its best features. Be sure to include important information, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, and any recent upgrades or improvements.
– List your home on popular real estate websites. Many websites, such as Zillow and Trulia, allow FSBO sellers to list their homes for free. Be sure to include your contact information so potential buyers can easily get in touch with you.
– Utilize social media. Share your listing on your personal social media accounts and ask friends and family to help spread the word. You can also join local Facebook groups dedicated to real estate and post your listing there.
– Put up a “For Sale” sign in your yard. This traditional marketing method is still effective, especially in high-traffic areas.

By using a combination of online and offline marketing strategies, you’ll increase your chances of reaching potential buyers and selling your house quickly.

Step 5: Host Open Houses and Showings

Once your home is listed for sale, you’ll need to be prepared to host open houses and showings for potential buyers. Here are some tips to make the process go smoothly:

– Schedule open houses and showings at convenient times. Weekends and evenings are typically the best times to host open houses, as more potential buyers will be available to attend.
– Be prepared to answer questions. Potential buyers will likely have questions about your home, such as its age, maintenance history, and utility costs. Be prepared to provide this information to help them make an informed decision.
– Be flexible with your schedule. While it can be inconvenient to accommodate last-minute showings, being flexible with your schedule can increase your chances of finding a buyer.

Remember, the more people who see your home, the higher the likelihood of receiving an offer.

Step 6: Negotiate Offers and Close the Sale

Once you receive an offer on your home, it’s time to negotiate the terms of the sale. This can be a complex process, but by following these tips, you can successfully navigate the negotiation process:

– Review the offer carefully. Make sure you understand all the terms and conditions of the offer, including the purchase price, closing date, and any contingencies.
– Be prepared to counteroffer. If the initial offer is too low or includes unfavorable terms, you can submit a counteroffer with your desired price and conditions.
– Consult with a real estate attorney. While not required, it can be helpful to have a real estate attorney review the offer and any counteroffers to ensure your interests are protected.
– Be patient. Negotiations can take time, and it’s essential to remain patient and professional throughout the process.

Once you’ve reached an agreement with the buyer, you’ll need to complete the necessary paperwork and close the sale. This typically involves signing a purchase agreement, providing the buyer with any required disclosures, and coordinating the closing process with a title company or attorney.


Selling your house by owner in Chicago and Illinois can be a challenging but rewarding experience. By following these six steps, you’ll be well on your way to successfully selling your home and saving thousands of dollars in real estate agent commissions. If you’re looking for an alternative to selling your house by owner, consider working with Tony Buys Homes. We buy houses in Illinois for cash, making the process quick and hassle-free. To learn more about our services, visit our Sell My House Fast Illinois page.