Often, homeowners try to “test the market” with a higher than fair-market price when first listing their home. That can be a poor marketing strategy. When your agent tries to talk you out of it: Listen! Setting “too high a price” will be too high a price for you to pay in the end.
Results from too high an initial price
Lowering your price after listing causes a chain-reaction in the marketplace that reduces the status of your listing. In the eyes of other agents that might bring buyers your way, a price reduction raises red flags. Here’s the short list:
- You miss the critical first 14 days when buyers and agents are most interested in a new listing.
- Other agents may dismiss you as an unreasonable seller that would be difficult to work with.
- Your home can no longer compete with other new listings fresh on the market, particularly if they are more fairly priced for your market.
- Buyers may think something is wrong with the home. They may press for more concessions, discounts or repairs, and upgrades.
- Relisting your home at a new price is not really a new listing, so agents may simply dismiss it.
Price your home right the first time
We are professionals that know the market for your home. Let us help you price your home fairly from the start. When priced correctly, your marketing strategy works for you to sell your home as close to your asking price as possible. Regardless of what you may believe about the value of your house, pricing it commiserate with five years in the past or five years into the future is to doom your home’s sale. Current fair market value means: The price that an interested but not desperate the home buyer would be willing to pay and an interested but not desperate home seller would accept on the open market for your area and based on comparisons to homes in location, size, upgrades and amenities.
What if prices are going down?
If prices in your area are trending down when you choose to enter the market, you may want to set your price “under” the fair market value so that you’re not forced to lower your initial price and trigger the results listed above.
What if prices are going up?
You cannot anticipate the market, so if prices in your area seem to be going up you can choose the top end of the “fair” range. Do not overprice your home, however, since market trends are volatile and can shift just enough to place your home out of range. Remember that lenders operate slightly behind the market, so if your home is too high too soon, a buyer may not be able to obtain funding to buy it.
Increase the value, not the price
As professionals, we work with you to set the right price for your house and get the most for your home sale. Some ways to raise the initial fair-market-value of your home are:
- Make sure your home is in the best condition possible: make repairs, simple upgrades (e.g., light fixtures, faucets), and clean, clean, clean.
- Neutralize deep paint colors and strong faux finishes. This doesn’t mean to paint everything white, but a modern neutral such as café au lait, warm gray or deep cream sets a canvass for homebuyers to visualize their own furnishing in.
- Depersonalize your home: buyers want to see themselves in the home, not the former owners. Remove family photos, trophies, school banners, children’s artwork and other giveaways that might hinder a buyer’s vision for his new home. Make sure none of your personal information is visible: hide bills, letters, cards and other items with your name.
- Clear clutter and simplify furnishings: As we live in our space, we tend to add, but rarely take away. An extra bookshelf or side table fits our needs, so we ignore that it crowds our space a little. When buyers enter a furnished home, crowded spaces can make the house appear too small. Clutter, even decorative clutter, can obscure a home’s assets such as architectural detail, higher ceilings and beautiful wood trim.
Setting the right price
We can help you set the right price the first time, so call us today at 858.333.8188 to help get your home sold!