Sam Richards GRI, Broker/Owner
DRE License #01305588
Real Estate Q & A
December 11, 2013
BUYING YOUR LISTING
Q. I see homes priced with various price endings, like $259,900, or $259,257. Are these prices based on anything real, or is the seller just trying to be different? B.M. Rio Vista
A. Once again, reflecting on my retail days, there was never an even dollar asking price. Everything ended in 99 cents to make the price look that much more appealing. In real estate, it's much the same premise, a seller wants to differentiate from others to gain your attention. Once a price is in the hundreds of thousands, it seems the a few dollars in an odd amount is just silly. If you're paying $259,000, youre not likely to offer the odd dollars; whereas if the home was priced at $260,000, that looks more like a firm price based on data.
We often have sellers in this market saying they want to at least get what they paid for the house, which in many cases could be a great deal more than it's worth. What a home owner paid or what they would like to net has nothing to do with the value of the home. The past market all but guaranteed value increases, but today your value could still fall. Bank re-possessed homes are lingering in what has been termed a "shadow inventory". If those homes start hitting the market in bulk, prices could fall and put lingering overpriced homes in jeopardy of looking tainted for not selling at what must surely be a fair price? Probably more of a price based on want rather than supporting data.
Since older prices, what the owner wants, or what was paid is not relevant, a home owner turned seller needs to be wary of Realtors that offer to list the home pricing at more than comparable homes are bringing just to get your listing. A poor Realtor will tell you they have a buyer when they don't, or tell you they can get your dream price when they know you will just sit on the market. The longer you sit waiting to sell, the more you will have to reduce to attract a buyer. This approach from a Realtor would be "buying the listing" by parroting back what you want to hear rather than helping you digest current market realities.
Q. Okay, l'll admit that all Realtors seem the same to me. What difference am I looking for to know I have a real go getter? J.S. Rio Vista
A. You're looking for an office or individual with a track record, networking, accessibility, forensic detective data capabilities to assess the market, good communicator, and someone that lives in the same community as the home for sale.
You need to look at yourself as an employer, and let the agent guide you through their approach. Real Estate is straight commission, and some Realtors in their desperation may lead with promises they can't keep or reduced commissions to get your business. But, you need to determine if they are giving you a deal or just putting a sign in the yard in hopes some other Realtor can get it sold. Remember that a reduced commission also reduces the amount to the agent that could bring a buyer. That buyer's agent won't show your home first if they can make more money down the street and still make their buyer happy. I use a local heat and air company for all our rentals, and I tell the home owners; he isn't always the cheapest, but he only has to come out once. The job you expected is done and then some!
The Realtor percentage isn?t the place to cut costs. If your home shows well and is priced right, offers could well be more than you asked.
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