Homes for saleThere is no shortage of talk these days in Plymouth & Cape Cod regarding homes for sale, real estate and inventory. I have conversations often with prospective sellers and buyers and encourage calls just to chat and/or discuss plans using me as a sounding board. I actually enjoy these conversations immensely.

As we move out of the difficult markets of the past several years where many have seen their property values plummet, some losing homes and others holding on but underwater. The recent stories of a turnaround and hope the housing market is gaining health are indeed welcome news. With fewer foreclosures some homeowners are using the word “equity” again. Housing prices in our markets have risen this past year and are continuing to rise in 2013.

For a number of listings recently, sellers have dug in their heels on price, with not so good results. Yes, you bought in 2005 and completed over $50,000 in renovations. And to move on or up you need money from the sale as a downpayment. And for some, I know you cashed in your 401k to cover the mortgage and college tuition for your children. You were responsible; you covered your debts and hung on through some tough times.

The reality of the current market: pricing is the key to selling quickly and profitably. The other reality is your home is worth what people are willing to pay, not what you may need. Sellers need to understand what is happening around them. Realtors want what sellers want, a quick sale close to asking price. We’re on the same page. And we spend a great deal of time pouring over data to come up with the right price range that your house should sell for in the current market.

But guess what? The market is not static; rather it is dynamic and changes monthly if not weekly. Your home may be priced perfectly on paper with all Realtors in the area agreeing. But what happens when the current market of buyers has a different price point in mind and if you only get offers lower than your bottom line? Sometimes the pool of available buyers just does not fit the inventory. This can be true even as many markets are low on inventory. And some buyers are being squeezed out of the market by investors.

You as a seller have a choice to make. If you want or need to sell you will adjust your sell point and accept an offer as close to your bottom line as possible. If you can wait you may test the market for a month or two. But waiting usually does two things.

1) Buyers start asking what is wrong with the property and think they smell blood in the water or
2) You get worn down and frustrated and end up taking a much lower offer than originally you may have received early in the listing process.

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To try to manage this, we developed a Micro-Pricing Strategy for Home Sellers (see below). Briefly, if you get pricing right from the outset and adjust the price (up or down, this should be minor if priced right at the beginning), then you can sell in a reasonable time frame and close to asking price. That is because buyers will perceive the price/value of your home and traffic will be good. A benefit to executing this strategy successfully is buyers won’t argue price too much as the activity levels are high and buyers will want to make an offer to avoid losing the property to another buyer.

This is working for us as we sell homes in Plymouth and Cape Cod. Pricing is the most important part of listing your home and you must be prepared to listen to the market and adjust your price and have a strategy. Having said this, there may be instances when buyers do not match inventory. Here’s hoping this changes quickly if it happens when you’re home is on market.

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HOME SELLERS – Receive our Micro-Pricing Strategy Guide. Sell in 50% of average listing days-on-market and close to asking price. For sample CLICK HERE

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