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For Sale by Owner: When to Use a Broker and How to Price the House

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  • Salant, Stephen W

Abstract

By using a broker, the owner of a house can speed up his search for buyers but must pay a percentage of the sale price as a commission. Nonstationarities inherent in the housing market may make it optimal to market a house "by-owner" at the outset and to retain a broker only if the house remains on the market later in the selling season. This article investigates the optimal sequence of asking prices within the by-owner phase, within the broker phase, and at the transition between the two phases. The asking price declines within each phase but may jump up at the transition to cover part of the commission. The model implicitly determines the demand for broker services as a function of the commission rate. When estimated, it may be useful in investigations of price fixing among brokers. Copyright 1991 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Salant, Stephen W, 1991. "For Sale by Owner: When to Use a Broker and How to Price the House," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 157-173, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrefec:v:4:y:1991:i:2:p:157-73
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Antonio Merlo & François Ortalo‐Magné & John Rust, 2015. "The Home Selling Problem: Theory And Evidence," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 56, pages 457-484, May.
    2. Igal Hendel & Aviv Nevo & François Ortalo-Magné, 2009. "The Relative Performance of Real Estate Marketing Platforms: MLS versus FSBOMadison.com," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1878-1898, December.
    3. Edward Rosenthal, 2011. "A Pricing Model for Residential Homes with Poisson Arrivals and a Sales Deadline," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 143-161, February.
    4. Elliot Anenberg, 2012. "Information frictions and housing market dynamics," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2012-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    5. Curran, Christopher & Schrag, Joel, 2000. "Does It Matter Whom an Agent Serves? Evidence from Recent Changes in Real Estate Agency Law," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(1), pages 265-284, April.
    6. William G. Hardin III & Ken H. Johnson & Zhonghua Wu, 2009. "Brokerage Intermediation in the Commercial Property Market," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 31(4), pages 397-420.
    7. Ying Li & Abdullah Yavas, 2015. "Residential Brokerage in Hot and Cold Markets," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 51(1), pages 1-21, July.
    8. Shimizu, Chihiro & Nishimura, Kiyohiko G. & Watanabe, Tsutomu, 2016. "House prices at different stages of the buying/selling process," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 37-53.
    9. repec:kap:jrefec:v:55:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s11146-016-9555-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Oz Shy, 2012. "Real Estate Brokers and Commission: Theory and Calibrations," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 45(4), pages 982-1004, November.
    11. Vickie L. Bajtelsmit & Elaine Worzala, 1997. "Adversarial Brokerage in Residential Real Estate Transactions: The Impact of Separate Buyer Representation," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 14(1), pages 65-76.
    12. Vrinda Kadiyali & Jeffrey Prince & Daniel Simon, 2014. "Is Dual Agency in Real Estate a Cause for Concern?," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 48(1), pages 164-195, January.
    13. J’Noel Gardiner & Jeffrey Heisler & Jarl Kallberg & Crocker Liu, 2007. "The Impact of Dual Agency," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 39-55, July.
    14. Abdullah Yavas & Peter F. Colwell, 1995. "A Comparison of Real Estate Marketing Systems: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 10(5), pages 583-600.
    15. Han, Lu & Strange, William C., 2016. "What is the role of the asking price for a house?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 115-130.
    16. John D. Benjamin & G. Donald Jud & G. Stacy Sirmans, 2000. "Real Estate Brokerage and the Hosting Market: An Annotated Bibliography," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 20(1), pages 217-278.
    17. Edward A. Baryla & Leonard V. Zumpano, 1995. "Buyer Search Duration in the Residential Real Estate Market: The Role of the Real Estate Agent," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 10(1), pages 1-14.
    18. John D. Benjamin & G. Donald Jud & G. Stacy Sirmans, 2000. "What Do We Know About Real Estate Brokerage?," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 20(1), pages 5-30.
    19. Han, Lu & Strange, William C., 2015. "The Microstructure of Housing Markets," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Elsevier.
    20. Geoffrey Turnbull & Jonathan Dombrow, 2007. "Individual Agents, Firms, and the Real Estate Brokerage Process," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 57-76, July.
    21. Sean Salter & Ken Johnson & Ernest King, 2010. "Listing Specialization and Pricing Precision," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 245-259, April.
    22. Hort, Katinka, 2000. "Prices and turnover in the market for owner-occupied homes," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 99-119, January.
    23. repec:eee:jhouse:v:37:y:2017:i:c:p:42-51 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Steven Stelk & Leonard V. Zumpano, 2017. "Can Real Estate Brokers Affect Home Prices Under Extreme Market Conditions?," International Real Estate Review, Asian Real Estate Society, vol. 20(1), pages 51-73.
    25. Thomas Miceli & Katherine A. Pancak & C. F. Sirmans, 2000. "Restructuring Agency Relationships in the Real Estate Brokerage Industry: An Economic Analysis," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 20(1), pages 31-47.

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