Although everyone seems to be talking about the current inventory challenges in the Seattle market, I want to instead devote some blog time to dispelling some of the myths around home selling – in any market.
Ask most people about selling a home and you will likely get diverse stories around the individual listing and selling experience. Homeowners who may have bought or sold love to recount their experiences by way of providing advice for your upcoming listing, but since each listing and transaction is different, their experience may be completely different from yours. Furthermore, since there can be a lot of information that goes back and forth during a transaction, it is easy to mis-remember the events… hence myths are both.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common myths when it comes to selling a home:
Myth #1: The longer a home is on the market, the higher chance it will sell.
Fact: The longer a home lingers on the market, the more likely it is to raise a red flag in the minds of potential buyers. Instead of flocking to view the home, buyers regard it with a cryptic eye wondering, “Why isn’t it selling? Is there a hidden flaw in it? Is it overpriced?”
The first few weeks of a listing represents the period where there is most viewing traffic from potential buyers. However, if a buyer perceives the price to be out of their range, they may choose not to view it.
The fix for a lingering listing is systematic price reductions, but that is not a fix for pricing it right in the first place. However, if a potential buyer sees the seller steadily dropping the price, they may assume that the home was overpriced when it first listed, explaining the long market time, and now the seller is ready to be reasonable.
But beware! Even when the price has dropped, the buyer may perceive it is still overpriced due to long market time. In my experience, sellers tend to have a tougher negotiating time when the home has been on the market for a while.
Also consider that new listings come on the market all the time. Competition doesn’t go away, leaving your listing the last one standing.
Myth #2: Buyers will be wowed by the condition and amenities. Price is secondary.
Fact: Price is king. Period.
Condition and amenities aren’t completely irrelevant. They can make the difference between a buyer loving your house over another. However, price is a much more important factor for most buyers.
Let’s liken this to a car. The features and amenities in, say, a Ferrari, are impressive. If a Ferrari were priced the same as a Honda, we would see more Ferraris on the road. However, most buyers cannot afford a Ferrari, regardless of the features and amenities. The same principles apply to your home.
Myth #3: Although my agent did a Comparative Market Analysis, my home doesn’t compare with those homes and should be priced higher.
This is something you will need to discuss with the agent who did the CMA. A thorough agent will try to choose homes that are most similar to yours, in a similar area, which have sold recently, there usually aren’t exact matches available. What an agent will do instead is find similar homes and make accommodations for condition and amenities.
I do extensive research when I do my CMAs, and the resulting price range is usually the market price range for the home.
I currently have nine listings, seven of which are pending. The average days on market for those that are pending is 8.85 which is indicative of pricing at market – the result of a CMA and extensive market research.
I would love to share additional information with you regarding myths you may have heard about selling your home in this market…or any market! Just give me a call at (206) 226-5300 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.