RISMEDIA, May 10, 2007-Inventories are up and the market is down, say many real estate prognosticators. Although the market has turned from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market, some sellers are still a bit unwilling to budge, convinced that “their home” is still worth its weight in gold. Here, three agents dish on how to best handle pricing expectation issues:
Real Estate magazine: As listing time increases, how do you help home sellers settle on the right listing price to sell the home?
Traci Kasparian, broker/owner, Real Living Lifetime Real Estate, Northborough, Massachusetts: When pricing a home, money isn’t the only factor. How quickly a seller wants to sell the property also comes into play. I developed an X & Y axis grid with both time and price. I color code properties (active, under contract, and sold) that are comparable to the subject property. It becomes very clear when I show the grid to sellers that depending upon their timeline for sale, the right price will highlight itself.
Alex Chaparro, broker/owner, Hudson Street Homes, Chicago, Illinois: Whenever there’s any market fluctuation, we go back to basics and pay close attention to CMAs. What has happened in the past is people say they want to “test the market.” Now, buyers and sellers are very educated and need to pay close attention to the CMA.
Dwayne West, broker/owner, Residential Brokers, Atlanta, Georgia: I always start with a CMA. From there, I take them with me into homes within the same price range and put themselves in the buyer’s shoes.
RE: How do you help sellers have realistic expectations on a price for their home?
TK: Share the data, not just your opinion. We all use objective data in conjunction with our subjective opinions: share it. Illustrate your rationale for pricing a property.
AC: Have a dialogue with your client. Accurate pricing is imperative, especially if something happens in the market. Homes that are not priced properly don’t sell. Realtors need to understand the market and articulate that to the client.
DW: I try to show them examples-this home sold at “X” price and took this long. I also try to give them different scenarios-if you sell at this price, this amount of time, etc.
RE: Do you ever walk away from a listing that’s priced too high?
TK: If I was working with a seller who refused to consider a price change, then I would discuss with the seller that I may not be the right person to list their house going forward.
AC: It would be an injustice to the client to take their listing if you’re not going to be able to sell it. I try to convince them to keep the home in a reasonable price range, but sometimes that just doesn’t work out.
DW: When I first started in this business, I would work with sellers like this, with the hope that they would soften up on the price. Now, I don’t have the time or patience. RE