Your home is, indeed, an asset for several reasons. First of all, you can sell the house whenever you choose and put cash in your pocket at closing. (Obviously this assumes that you sell your house for more than you paid for it. Admittedly, that’s not always possible consider about 25% of homeowners are underwater – or owe more on their mortgages than the homes are currently worth).
In any event, whenever a homeowner is able to sell a home for more than the mortgage balance, those are real dollars, not phantom profits.
The fact you’ll likely pay a real estate commission on the sale doesn’t diminish your home’s status as an asset, just like paying a commission to a stockbroker when you sell a mutual fund doesn’t negate that fund’s standing as an asset.
By the same token, it might take you one month or even six months to sell your house, whereas unloading the furniture in your house could be done in one day, at a garage sale. In both cases, a sale is a sale and you’re still making money off the assets that buyers agree to purchase.