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14 min read Sep 02, 2023

Selling a House in Sarasota, FL: 7 Powerful Steps

From Indian Beach to San Remo, home prices have declined in several metros across the Circus City State. A recent statement from a Fed official suggests the interest rates aren’t stabilizing anytime soon. 

By the end of 2023, you might have to settle for a much lower selling price. So, if you are ready to sell your house in Sarasota, FL list now.

Amidst rising mortgage rates and a slowing housing market, this 7-step guide will help you sell a house in Sarasota.

📉 Sarasota, FL Home Selling Stats

  • # of Homes Sold are Dropping in Sarasota, FL: The number of homes sold in Sarasota, FL has dropped 16.8% from 167 in 2022 to 139 in July 2023.
  • Mortgage Interest Rates are Still Rising: Interest rates for a 30-year fixed mortgage have more than doubled in 12 months. They are at 8.031% as of Aug 16, 2023.
  • iBuyers are Not a Viable Option: iBuyers have either shut down or have suffered massive losses. Our analysis suggests that iBuyers will offer much less than Fair Market Value for your home in 2023 and 2024.
  • Bottom Line: In 2023, more sellers are selling their homes by owner. Use FSBO websites to get maximum exposure via the MLS and to save thousands in commission – negating the decline in home prices.

Sell Your House in Sarasota, FL in 7 Steps

Here are the 7 steps to selling real estate in Sarasota in 2023’s slowing housing market.

Step 1: Hire a Listing Agent (or Don’t)

Gone are the days when selling your house meant interviewing several agents and finding the best one for your needs. Today, some of the best FSBO sites and tech brokerages will match you with top agents and get you listed on the MLS fast.

And they will assist you in every step of the transaction with a Realtor’s expertise paired with useful and efficient technology.

You Have 4 Options to Sell Your Home in Sarasota, FL:

  1. List Your Home on a For Sale By Owner Website: Florida For Sale By Owner websites allow you to leverage technology in your home sale and save thousands in agent commissions. FSBO sites will also get you listed fast, typically within 24 to 48 hours. You get to retain control of your transaction by being able to engage directly with the buyer and buyer’s agent.
  2. List with a Discount Real Estate Broker: The best discount real estate brokers in Sarasota offer all the services that traditional Realtors do but at discounted rates. They usually charge 1.5% to 3% commissions to list your home.
  3. List with a Full-Service Realtor: We do not recommend hiring a full-service agent. You will have to pay a hefty real estate commission of 5% to 6%, which will decrease your net proceeds significantly. However, if you need hand-holding at each step, opt for local real estate agents in your neighborhood.
  4. Sell Your Home to an iBuyer: An iBuyer can make a cash offer instantly and help you sell your house fast in Sarasota. They make cash offers as high as 100% of the Fair Market Value. However, iBuyers have strict purchase criteria.
    ✍️ Pro Tip: Sell Your Distressed Property to Cash Home Buyers

    Sarasota, FL cash home buyers typically offer 50% to 70% of the property’s Fair Market Value. They majorly deal in distressed and rental properties.

Step 2: Price Your Sarasota Home for Sale

Pricing your home competitively is critical for a successful sale. It is simple to arrive at a list price. Analyze the currently active and recently sold similar listings in your neighborhood. Refine the price further to nail down the exact list price.

In a hot sellers’ market, you can price your home up to 10% more than the neighborhood prices. Whereas in a buyer’s market, set your asking price slightly lower to beat the competition.

» How to Price Your Home for Sale: See how to nail down your list price in 6 steps!

Step 3: Hire a Pro Photographer

Professional photos can greatly impact the selling process by attracting more buyers. According to VHT Studio’s Analysis, homes photographed professionally sell 32% faster.

Hire professional Sarasota, FL real estate photographers to create a portfolio of your house. A professional photographer can collate a portfolio that otherwise may not be possible if you take up the job.

Here are a few things you can do to ready your home for Sarasota real estate photography:

  • Declutter & Depersonalize: Tidy up your place and keep the surfaces clean – coffee tables, countertops, etc. Keep trash cans, dirty dishes, towels, etc. away. Also, remove personalized items such as photos, keepsakes, fridge magnets, etc.
  • Repaint Neutral: Neutral colors appeal to a larger pool of people. This will help in attracting more buyers.
  • Keep the Lights On: Use light bulbs wherever necessary. Natural light works best for photography. Ensure to keep the curtains and blinds open.
  • Improve Curb Appeal: Go for clear landscapes, fresh flowers, or exquisite wall paints. Remove dead plants, trees, etc.
  • Hire a Professional Home Stager: According to RESA, staged homes can sell for up to $40,000 over the list price. Also, staged homes sell 9 days faster. An average home seller spends $1,774 on home staging. Hire professional home staging companies in Florida to stage and prep your house for listing photographs and walkthroughs.

Step 4: List and Market Your Sarasota, FL Property

Homes listed on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) sell faster and for 13% more. If you are working with a Sarasota Realtor, they will do the MLS listing for you.

FSBO sellers can opt for a Flat Fee MLS service like Houzeo to list on the MLS. Houzeo will get you on the MLS for a small flat fee starting from $349. Your listing will be syndicated to 100+ real estate websites, giving your house the maximum exposure.

Apart from listing on the MLS, you may try some other unique ways to market your house. These may range from listing your house on Craigslist to sharing your Sarasota FSBO listings on social media.

» How to List on MLS in Florida: Here’s how to get an MLS without a Realtor.

Listing Paperwork

The listing paperwork would mainly consist of the listing agreement and the Florida seller’s disclosure.

  • Listing Agreement: A listing agreement will be signed between you and your local Sarasota real estate broker. It will allow your broker to list your property on the local Florida MLS and thereby find buyers for you as per your terms.
  • Florida Seller’s Disclosure: Florida seller’s disclosure statement is a standard checklist form. It allows you to disclose material defects and features of the property. The seller’s disclosure provides information about the property that may negatively affect the value of the house.

Step 5: Manage Showings

Typically, Realtors host open houses or arrange private showings. If you are selling a house in Florida by owner you can use online tools to manage showings.

  • Open Houses: According to the NAR, 92% of home buyers find open houses useful. Hosting an open house is a good low-pressure way to show your home to potential buyers. You may even attract unrepresented buyers, saving the entire buyer agent commissions.
  • In-person Showings: Realtors in Sarasota usually bring buyers and show them the house in person. But, if you are selling a home without a Realtor, we recommend you opt for an online showings tool that will help you manage showings.

With an online showing tool, buyers, and buyer agents can request and schedule showings. For instance, with Houzeo Showings, buyers and buyer agents can choose a particular showing slot as stated by you. The tool also provides features like requesting, rescheduling, updating, and canceling showings.

Step 6: Review, Compare, and Negotiate Offers

With the right marketing strategy, you should have offers coming your way for your Sarasota home.

The next step would be to compare the offers. Most house sellers go with the highest bid. But here are additional factors you must weigh before settling on an offer:

Keep these questions in mind when comparing offers. Typically, real estate brokers do such negotiations for you. As a For Sale By Owner seller, you can use offer management tools like Houzeo Offers. With Houzeo Offers you can make counter offers, call for the best offer, and a lot more.

» Highest and Best Offer: Is it a smart move in multiple offer situations?

Step 7: Close the Sale

Title companies or real estate attorneys act as closing agents in Sarasota. Here are the milestones you need to complete to close the home sale:

Pay Home Selling Taxes in Sarasota

You will very likely pay the following taxes while selling your house in Sarasota:

  • Transfer Tax: Transfer tax is a one-time fee (generally costs less than 1%) that sellers pay at the time of transferring the ownership between the two parties. You need to pay this tax to the local government body in your area.
  • Property Tax: Property tax varies by county, but you will pay approximately 1% of the total home sale value to the government as property tax. You can claim a rebate if you have paid your property tax a year in advance. If you have not paid the tax, then you need to pay the pending amount.

Pay the Sarasota Seller Closing Costs

Seller and buyers both pay separate closing costs at closing. Closing costs for a seller in Florida usually consist of HOA fees, escrow fees, real estate attorney fees, and home warranty fees.

Additionally, you need to pay the commissions for both the listing and the buyer agent, which could add up to 6%. If you offer seller concessions, you might cover some buyer’s closing costs in Florida.


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Sign Documents Needed to Sell a House in Sarasota

This is the final step in your selling your house in Sarasota. It usually consists of signing the escrow and title documents. Additionally, you will sign the deed and the closing disclosure.

After signing all the documents, the new homeowner’s name is registered in the public record. The buyer signs a check or makes a wire transfer of the sale amount, and your home is sold.

» Paperwork for Selling a House: Everything you need to know.

Tips to Sell a House in Sarasota, FL in 2023

The above steps will help you prepare your home for sale. To ensure you sell your home successfully, follow these fool-proof tips to guarantee a smooth sale in 2023:

  1. Work with an Agent or go FSBO: The house-selling process will differ based on which option you choose. You will get hand-holding if you choose to go with an agent. However, by selling your home yourself, you can save on high seller commissions.
  2. Use Advanced Tech Tools: Learn to manage the sale of your home using Showing Management and Offer Management tools. These tools will help you track the progress of the sale and take the next step on time.
  3. Provide Seller Concessions: Due to the high mortgage rates, home buyers are not motivated to purchase homes. As a house seller, you can offer seller concessions to assist an interested home shopper.

» Tips for Selling Your Home: Check these 9 powerful tricks to sell your home in Sarasota in 2023!

Bottom Line

Selling a home in Sarasota can be daunting if you do not find the right real estate agent. But, hiring a real estate agent will cost you a 3% commission.

If you are looking to save thousands in Florida real estate commission, sell your house with

Houzeo real estate is a tech-centric For Sale By Owner website and real estate platform that gives you access to tools only real estate agents have. Here’s how Houzeo works to maximize your savings and exposure.

» Should I Sell My House Now? : Explore if you should sell now or wait for a year.

Eager to Know More?

We’ve got you covered. Check out the following video to understand why Houzeo is one of the best for sale by owner websites in the U.S.

What is Houzeo?

An overview of what the platform is all about

Start Your MLS Listing NOW!

» NEED MORE CLARITY? Read these exclusive Houzeo reviews and learn why it is one of the best FSBO sites in America.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are typical closing costs for sellers in Sarasota, FL?

Home sellers in Sarasota, FL typically pay closing costs that include HOA fees, escrow fees, real estate attorney fees, and home warranty fees.

2. How to sell a house in Sarasota, FL in 2023?

If you want to sell your home in 2023, you must list your home on MLS for max exposure. Additionally, you should offer a competitive price and buyer agent commission to increase the chances of selling your home. List with Houzeo without a Realtor and save thousands on seller commissions!

3. Who pays title insurance at closing in Sarasota, FL?

The home seller typically pays for the owner's title insurance, and the buyer pays for the lender's title insurance at closing in Sarasota, FL.

4. Is it a good time to sell a house in Sarasota, FL?

Mortgage rates are on the rise. As a result, home prices are declining, and you may have to settle for less than the asking price. So, if you are ready to sell your house in Sarasota, FL, now is the best time to start. We recommend research the best time to sell a home in Florida to maximize your net proceeds.

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