The seeds of For Sale By Owner Connection (which has evolved into cutthecommission.com, ctbyowner.com and FSBOConnection.com) were planted way back in the dark ages of 1980. My husband and I were getting married and bought our first house. We were from the area so we didn't think we needed a specific agent to show us listings. We went to open houses, did a lot of research on our own, and ended up with a cute fixer-upper in Simsbury, CT. The agent (we’ll call her "Janet") was pleasant, and lucky for her we didn’t have her show us any other houses. We were the ideal buyers! Everything went fine, but we came through the transaction realizing that the bank and attorney really did most of the work to get us in our new home. The seed was planted.
The next year we went to a tag sale in Canton and found that the homeowners were selling their home. We loved it. We negotiated directly with the owners, came to terms on a price, but unfortunately their house was listed with an agent so we couldn’t buy directly from them. We never toured the house with an agent, yet the owners were going to owe full commission. The seed was watered.
We figured since we had to use an agent anyway we would enlist the help of "Janet". We called her and explained that we had found our next home, had the deal all negotiated, and asked… Could she be the agent on the new house (that we were handing her on a silver platter) and list our current home at a reduced commission? She said she was not allowed to reduce the commission, but she would give us money back after closing. We believed her.
Our house sold fairly quickly. We knew the buyers were interested. We had to leave the house during the showing, and after a half hour or so we came home to find they were still there. We drove around the block. And drove, and drove. Stalking our own house! We could see the buyer sitting in a rocking chair in our living room talking with their agent. We knew it was a good sign. The next day we called "Janet". Any news? She knew nothing. The next day..she knew nothing. Could she please call the other agent for feedback? The suspense was killing us. After some telephone tag she found out that yes – these people were interested and were talking with their bank. We’d know something in a few days. How we wished we could have been in our living room talking with them directly that night! The sun warmed the ground.
We closed on the sale of our house, bought the one in Canton, and waited to see what "Janet" would give us after closing. What would we do with the money she was going to give us? Some new appliances? A little redecorating? Long story short – no money back after closing! She gave us a house plant that died a month later. Great. The seed started to sprout.
We thought there must be a better way! A real estate market in which agents are compensated for the work they do. A market where sellers can save money by doing some of the simple leg work, and where buyers can save, too, when they aren’t needing an agent to cart them around. A world where buyers are allowed to talk with the seller directly rather than through agents who know little about the property.
Step one - I got my real estate license thinking that I could start to work in a way that met my goals for that new real estate world. Selling part time to friends (at that point I was an engineer full time) was fun, but I found I had to work with the old ways of the established real estate companies. Listings were considered gravy. Lock someone into a contract and you could basically sit back and wait for the money to come. Agents working with buyers would show your listing, and you’d get commission with not much work. Shouldn’t sellers catch on to this fact, and want to cut the commission of the listing agent to something more in line with the amount of work required? The plant was fertilized.
That was it. In order to make the change I’d have to jump outside the box. In 1988 we published our first issue of For Sale By Owner Connection. It was a grainy newsprint publication with black and white photos, no option for listing in MLS®, and certainly no internet. We were at the cusp of the FSBO revolution as one of the first FSBO magazine printed.
The plant is now a tree! Many years later we happily look back at the thousands of families we have helped live the American Dream, and think of the money they saved while doing it! We have so many repeat customers that we know not only are they saving substantial money, but they are having a pleasant experience while doing it!
Without that houseplant infested with bugs For Sale By Owner Connection and CutTheCommission.com might not exist. Thank you "Janet"!
Share in the fruit of our FSBO tree! Let us help you sell your home!
Meet The team!
Carol York - Broker -
The story you just read is my story. I've been helping sellers sell FSBO for so long it seems like I just eat and sleep saving folks money!
In my spare time I'm active on town and church boards, with the Chamber of Commerce, local garden club, and in my real spare time I attempt to play some tennis.
I have 3 children and am now proud to say I'm a grandma!
We have had so many repeat clients (one family has bought and sold 5 times with us!). I'd love to help you sell your property. Give me a call.
And after all these years I am still thrilled when someone sells their home through our program. And doubly thrilled when it sells FSBO!