Cincinnati and Warren County Ohio Patio Homes

Mr. FSBO, First We Have To Find You

we can't sell what we can't findMy niche takes me across two states.  I help buyers with their low maintenance home needs from the south of Dayton, down through Cincinnati and into northern Kentucky.  Literally that's dozens and dozens of communities.  At some time or another I've driven through the vast majority of them, but in some cases the buyer demand for a particular community might be pretty low.  Couple that with how scarce patio homes and ranch condos for sale can be in some communities and the need to venture down the streets of a community lessens even more.

So what do I rely on to help me keep track of all the patio homes and ranch condos for sale in the communities I specialize in?  The tool MOST agents rely upon, the Multiple Listing Service aka the MLS.  The MLS is the shared database that every local agent uses to present the homes they have for sale to other agents and the public.

It's relatively easy for me to set up a tracking search for each of the communities that are in my niche.  A new home comes on the market in one of those communities and I get an email notification almost immediately.  I run through my list of buyers for possible matches and if not already automatically notified I let them know.

You know what's missing from this search?  Any home NOT listed in the MLS.

If a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) just puts a sign in the yard, they're probably invisible to me, and thus invisible to my buyers.  It takes a lucky drive down the right street at the right time to even know there's a patio home or condo for sale.  And if that street is a good distance from me, the odds are VERY long that I'll drive by the right house at the right time.

Now if a FSBO uses the Internet to advertise, their home MIGHT get found.  Maybe one of my buyers is surfing the net and stumbles upon the home.  Maybe I'm checking Zillow out for Make Me Moves and For Sale By Owners for possible matches, but frankly this is my second choice for looking for homes.

Why?  Because homes in the MLS give me confidence in a few things: 

1.  Someone on the other side knows and understands the process.  The showing of homes, negotiations, etc.

2.  There's a willingness to compensate me for bringing a buyer.

3.  If there is an issue, my broker and the listing agent's broker can have a conversation to help resolve the problem.

Now while I can work out the 2nd issue with some FSBO sellers, the rest is a bit of a dice roll. 

And again, that's assuming that either me or one of my buyers find you at all.

The best odds of success are being found by the largest number of buyers, and MOST buyers are working with an agent.  So if you're hidden from agents, you're hidden from buyers.

Our recommendation?  Find an agent that can get you in MLS and that provides the service package you need.  Ohio does allow limited service, so if all you're looking for is an MLS entry, that can be arranged (although not with our brokerage).  If you're looking for a total marketing and representation package, then give us a call.  And who knows?  Maybe I already have a buyer match, I just didn't know you were for sale.



Need help with buying or selling a home in greater Cincinnati? 

Just give us a call  at 513-520-5305 or email

We look forward to hearing from you! 

Bill & Liz aka BLiz



Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas


The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth Spear, ABR, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2002007747

William (Bill) Spear, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2004011109  Kentucky 77938
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Bill Direct:  513-520-5305
Liz Direct: 513-265-3004     
Fax: 866-302-8418


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Comment balloon 4 commentsLiz and Bill Spear • August 31 2018 03:48AM


It does make a huge difference.  We live in a remote kind of area where signs are of little importance and the MLS and putting your house out there for the agents to see if how a buyer gets found.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) 8 months ago

It is hard for a FSBO to get the best price they can when they do not reach everyone thay could

Posted by William Feela, Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No. (WHISPERING PINES REALTY) 8 months ago

Being easily findable is the first step to getting a home sold quickly; both because buyers can find the home, and agents can as well. Good point!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, 8 months ago

Some people seem really good at tracking down FSBO's, expired listings and cancelled listings.  This has never been a road I wanted to travel down and I hope that I don't have to chase those, haha.  You definitely are on top of things with your niche and I am sure your clients appreciate it.

Posted by Brian England, MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ (Arizona Focus Realty) 8 months ago