my 1st HBS –need advice from experienced

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  • Im John and have scheduled my first HBS in about 4 weeks. A couple of things out of the ordinary–I’m not receiving compensation since I’m doing it for my church–selling their SFR zoned multifamily. Its only a small 2/1 needing about 12-16 M work. Also plan to do the sale on Friday and Saturday because of religious conflicts,,instead of the recommended Sat and Sunday. I have ordered Jackie’s HBS manual with forms tips, etc.
    One question—I’m guessing I don’t need an option to be a principal since I don’t get a check. Another question, Jackie said she uses a 4′ x 5′ sign in the front yard. Is a 4’x4′ more economical since you can get 2 out of a 4×8 material, or do sign companies have that size stock , or maybe use 4×8 sign? Is it best to not list a phone number or should it go on the HBS website listing ? these questions might be answered in the manual but it wont ship till Monday and I’m eager to get started. appreciate any suggestions.

    Just to get a hang of the whole process I think maybe you should use an option. You can release it for zero consideration. I use a banner 4′ X 8′ tied between two stakes. I use two of them. Jackie can comment on the phone number on the banner outside the home. I do not have a phone number on mine.

    Don Wede

    Send me an email so I can send you the PDF version of the book and you can get started learning before you receive your paperback book

    Yes, you should get an option. Just in case some real estate agents has a hissie fit that you are selling a house for someone else. Or at least get a marketing consulting agreement.

    A 4 x 4 sign is fine. To save money you could even do the writing with a black magic market in super bold print.

    You need to start an aggressive craiglist campaign.

    Distribute fliers through the neighborhood.

    You will need about 50 other signs — 18 x 24 inches — to put around town to direct people to the open house and HBS. Once again, to save money, you could just write on these with a big fat black magic market or use two colors to attract attention.

    You do not need a phone number on the banners or signs, but you should put a phone number on the fliers.

    You should also have a TAKE ONE box near the front door with fliers in it so people can get information before the open house. Remember to include your link to your listing at

    Since you get a free listing at you should send me an email with the street name so I can get you set up at HBS then you can add the property information and LOTS of photos.

    If you search on for MAGNUM MARKER, you’ll pull the 3/4″ super fat tipped markers that are just perfect for high-visibility signs.

    Looks like they carry black, red and blue:

    Also, I used to handwrite signs on large sheets of coroplast material. It’s a plastic simulation of heavy duty cardboard, available in up to 4 foot by 8 foot sheets, but it won’t die on you in a rainstorm and wither like cardboard. It’s also easy to nail to wooden stakes with roofing nails. It’s easy to find Coroplast suppliers in larger cities, but maybe not so much in small ones. I don’t know where you are.

    But you can’t roll it up for ease of portability like banners. Your choice.

    I used to use the Magnum markers to handwrite signs on smaller coroplast blanks that I cut from 4 x 8′ sheets, and then use a hammer tacker hinge-rigged on a long pole to slap/staple them in one whack way up high on phone and power poles. Those markers made them really visible. (Sh…..don’t tell the cops in that “other” city.)



    The great thing about the coroplast signs is they last forever. If you make a generic sign, you can use it for the next the next and the next Highest Bidder Sale.

    Plus it has the little holes so you can use the wire stakes which are much easier to get in the ground than wooden stakes. A bundle of 100 wire stakes did code $65 the last time I bought them. Not sure about the price now. You can get the wire stakes at any local sign shop. it is usually cheaper than ordering online then paying for shipping.

    Wire stakes look like a H. the two top I stick in the coroplast sign. The two bottom I stick in the ground.

    I have also used color duck tape to cover up things on a coroplast sign so I could use it for the next Highest Bidder Sale

    What price would you recommended for getting a successful HBS? I have an option on a house for 80% of FMV, but i think it is about 10% too high for it to be successful. It is in a good neighborhood.

    Yes 80% is too high for a successful HBS unless you only get paid a flat fee. It really depends on the market location and the property condition.

    If you are in a hot market, 80% could work.

    If you are in a not so hat market 80% will not work

    of course you would need to advertise the starting bid way less than 80% to attract buyers

    Got my option paperwork,,,,signs being made,,,listing at hbs website,,,,next is inspection, fliers, getting ready for the marketing blitz,,,,,,,,going slow because I tend to overthink everything,,,,but I’ve got Jackies book and listening over and over to audios. Thanks to all of you for your help. I’m gaining confidence as I’m getting closer,,,still have 2 weeks, so I’ll be fine,,,maybe more questions later,,,,John

    Keep at it and let us know how it goes after the HBS
    Don Wede


    You can do this!

    It sounds like you have all your basis covered.

    Keep in mind two things

    The house needs 12-15k in work so your ideal buyer will be an all cash investor. But they will only buy if they can get it at 30% below market.

    Anyone who is not an investor will have a very hard time getting financing with all the repairs needed. So, you probably need to talk to some mortgage brokers to see what financing is available AND get them at the house to qualify people on the spot during the open house


    How did the HBS go? Details please….

    Went very well, especially for my first time,,,,,,I was only able to do about 40% of the marketing you recommend,,,,,,but I focused on the signs which, I feel, made the difference.
    House was small 2/1. 1100 sf,,,built in 1940s,,,,,needed about 10-12,000 rehab.
    Best features are multi family zoning and 5 blocks to the Atlantic Ocean.

    Option/strike price was 130,000. Church owned ( I’m a member there and my only compensation
    Is the signs, etc). They were comfortable to contract for a 130 offer until I convinced them to try
    The HBS. Another obstacle was having the open houses Friday and Saturday instead of Saturday and
    Sunday. Friday had approx 25 visitors and 7 bidders sign up. Saturday had probably 40-50 visitors and 12 additional bidders. Total of 19 bidders, round-robin bidding took almost 3 hours,,,,,$1,000 minimum
    Bid ups ,,,,,,,final high bid was $176,100,,,,much higher than anyone thought. My associate with the church didn’t expect to go higher than 130,,,,and I thought about 150. He is flabbergasted . It helped to be in a good market here in NE florida coast. I am high on the HBS and looking forward to
    Doing the next one for profit,,,,,,numbers on this one would have been $ 46,000 profit !!!!!

    Thanks to Jackie, my friend Hank, and the rest of you for your guidance and support.

    WOW John That is incredible. Congratulations on getting the church more money than they thought they could get.

    You are right that the signs are the most important part so it is good that you focued on that. Craigslist would be #2 on my list of priorities.

    I bet other people from the church and the neighorhood where the HBS was will be contacting you to do a HBS for them soon

    I LOVE doing a HBS. It is true capitalism when the “market” determines the price. A HBS removes all the friction between seller and buyer too! It is absolutely the best way to sell a house in my opinion.

    Plus a HBS is risk free! The only thing you can lose is a little time.

    The signs can be used over and over again.

    A round robin does take a lot of time but it is so much fun when the price goes up up up up

    Will you do a coaching call to talk about your HBS?

    what was your advertised starting bid?

    Advertised starting bid was $ 79,500.
    I did use Craig’s list but couldn’t keep up with the twice a day postings.

    GUESS WHAT ? Got a call tonight, less than 24 hours after the sale, for a lead for
    Another HBS in a nearby neighborhood, This one for $.

    Forgot to mention that I did get an inspection report, and last 3 high bidders are cash buyers.

    Yes I will be glad to participate on a conference call, depending on date.

    John, since you’re a newbie to the auction phenomenon, here’s a wee tidbit just to give you some encouraging goosebumps. From this link

    I found this record of the earliest auctions known in history.

    “The history of auctions extends back to 500 B.C. when Herodotus reported the use of an auction. These auctions were for the purpose of selling women under the condition that they be married following purchase. Reports indicate that less attractive women were sold with monetary compensation given to the bidder. Whether or not these auctions were ascending or descending bid auctions was not recorded.

    The Roman Empire used auctions to liquidate property and estate goods. The mechanism implemented was referred to as the “atrium auctionarium”. It is not known whether or not these auctions were ascending or descending bid auctions, but the name used for the market mechanism would lead one to deduce that the auctions were ascending. The word “actus” in Latin means increasing, and since it is incorporated into the name of the market it is assumed that bids were made in an increasing fashion.

    Within the Roman Empire the “atrium auctionarium” was also used by the soldiers to sell goods acquired “sub hasia”(under the spear). Probably the most bizarre account of early auctions concerns the year 193 A.D. when the entire Roman Empire was put on the auction block after being sacked. Aside from the earlier accounts of the Roman auctions, there also exists evidence of Buddhist monks in China using auctions to fund the creation of temples, as it became customary to auction off the property of deceased monks for this purpose.”

    2,500 years of time-testing the process is not bad. (Hopefully we don’t auction off women any more.) Anyway, how’s that for goosebumps?



    You have a list of buyers from the HBS… time to go find them some houses.

    You know they like that area. So I suggest you either go door knocking to fnd sellers or send postcards to every house in the neighborhood.

    Stay in touch with the buyers.

    The conference call can be any Tuesday in September except the 23rd – you pick the date. Thanks!

    Keep up the great work!


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