Follow up: Best Bidder Sale


Dear George,

We finally closed and are able to give you final outcome of our sale. See letter below sent to a handful of neighbors who asked for info. You were marvelous as a coach, George. Call on me if I can assist you in any way. Many thanks and stay in touch.


Our Results

To you and a few others who expressed an interest, I promised to share a few more details about how things worked out with the “best and highest bidder” sale of our home at No. 19 Governors Hill. With closing on June 11, and now back from a much-needed vacation, here are the highlights:

  • 68 families attended the Open House on April 14, 15
  • 9 submitted bids
  • 5 were active in the round robin bidding Sunday evening
  • The house sold for $785,000, with the buyer paying closing costs; there were no realtors’ fees for either party

Prior to the sale, three realtors had offered to sell our house the traditional way; their suggested listing prices were $750,000, $758,900 and $835,000, respectively; 6% of these numbers would have gone to realtors’ fees, and closing costs likely split between buyer and seller.

We would have had to list this 3891 sq. ft. house at $839,500 to achieve the net to seller of $785,000 (i.e., 785k to us, 6% to realtors and 1% closing costs paid by buyer); if you wish, you can use these figures in calculating your own “apples to apples” comp for this sale alongside others in the neighborhood.

Since we did not use a realtor, there will be no record of this For Sale by Owner (FSBO) transaction on MLS.

What did we learn and would we do it again?

  • We liked the idea of having to be “ready” for showing for only one weekend, instead of months.
    Ditto for being able to meet potential buyers and answer questions directly.
  • The intellectual clarity of market driven pricing appealed to us; this house sold for what a “willing seller and willing buyer” agreed to through a fully transparent bidding process with rules to protect both parties.
  • Great support from our two HOAs; we honored all guidelines for signage, etc.; the only unusual request was to have Open House for two days, instead of one as stated in rules.

We took counsel from an industry leader George Cappony who had helped sell innumerable homes for 30 years homes this way; while we ran the show, his templates for web site, rules, and many other details were invaluable.
We received great help from our attorney, and the two mortgage brokers who were on site for the Open House.
Absolutely no regrets and would do it again.

We decided to rent for a year until we determine what’s best for our move to downsized living in Austin. Still at BCC and look forward to seeing you there.

Sincere thanks for 12 wonderful years as your neighbor. Don’t hesitate to call if we can assist in any way.

April 4, 1st email to neighbors:


Dear Governors Hill Friends,

With our daughter married last year, we’re on a path to downsize and have decided to sell our home at No. 19 Governors Hill. As you can imagine, the decision is not without regrets. We love our neighborhood, and thank each of you for being a part of 12 wonderful years here.

You’ll be interested also in learning about the novel way we’ve chosen to sell our home. It’s “For Sale By Owner”, with a twist.

We learned about the “5 Day Sale”, aka “Fast Action Sale” method from friends, one of whom sold homes in gated communities in Charleston and Kiawah Island using this method.

Here’s how it works:

  • On April 14 & 15, we will have an open house and receive bids on the property.
  • Using Rules and Terms of Sale provided us by others who have successfully sold their homes this way, we intend to sell our home to the “Highest and Best Bidder” on Sunday night, April 15.
  • See our website and the attached flyer for details.

FYI, other unique features of this process include:

  • Contrary to traditional listings, this starts at a low number and allows the market to bid up to a price acceptable to “both seller and buyer”.
  • Neither bidder nor seller is obligated to buy based on a bid, until a contract is signed.
  • The day after the winning bid, buyer and seller meet at our selected Title Company, and the rest of the transaction is “traditional closing”.
  • Broker’s fees on Buyer’s side are protected.
  • With no seller broker fee, this saves money for both sides.
  • There is hard work marketing (for us) in the two weeks prior to Open House, yet the process promises closure far earlier than “months on the market”.

All of this said, this is the first time for us. So, prayers and good wishes much appreciated.

Please FORWARD this email and/or tell your friends who may be interested in this opportunity in our wonderful neighborhood!

Many thanks!



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