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. I will do everything I can to talk you out of that! 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
As a professional, I know the market for your home. Let me 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, setting the wrong price initially is going to doom your home’s sale. Current fair market value means: The price that an interested but not desperate home buyer would be willing to pay and an interested but not desperate homeseller would accept on the open market for your area and based on comparisons to homes in location, size, upgrades and amenities.
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:
- Clean, clean, clean. Obviously I can’t emphasize that enough. Dirty houses don’t sell.
- Make sure your home is in the best condition possible: make repairs, simple upgrades (e.g., light fixtures, faucets), and neutralize deep paint colors and strong faux finishes. This doesn’t mean to paint everything white. A modern neutral such as café au lait, warm gray, or deep cream sets a canvas for home buyers to visualize their own furnishing in.
- THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT: 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 any other items that might hinder a buyer’s vision for his new home. And be sure none of your personal information is visible such as bills, letters, cards, or 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.
For now, the message is “Set the right price”. Let’s go over the comparative properties in your neighborhood and get it right the first time!