76 percent of homeowners believe their home is worth more than the list price recommended by their real estate agent, according to a first-quarter survey of homebuyers and sellers done by HomeGain.com, a real estate services website.
Your home is worth what a buyer will pay for it right now. It may not match what you think your home will sell for, or what you hope it’s worth. Relying on emotion rather than logic when selecting a list price can lead to disappointing results.
Home buyers usually have a better grasp of current market value in the area where they’re looking to buy than do sellers who own and live there. Sellers also don’t realize that appraisers are strictly constrained by lender requirements and hyper-vigilance, and are unlikely to support an unrealistic sales price.
You only have one time to make a good first impression. The prime opportunity for selling a home is when it’s new on the market. This is when it is most marketable. Buyers wait for the new listings.
This is the opportunity to show your house off to advantage with a list price that attracts buyers’ attention. Listings that sell today are priced right for the market. Buyers need to feel comfortable that they are getting a good deal.
When selecting a list price, research the recent listing inventory for homes similar to yours that sold. The most recent sales give the best indication of the direction of the market. Your real estate professional can provide the facts.
They analyze these comparable sales giving more value to your home for attributes that it has that the comparables don’t, like a remodeled kitchen. Value is subtracted from your home for features it lacks when compared to the sold comparables, like a pool, or large yard.
If there is high demand for homes like yours, you may receive more than one offer. It is a false belief that you have to provide a negotiating “cushion”. It’s better to stay in the range shown by the comparables and expose the house to the market before accepting offers. The market will drive the price up if it’s warranted.
Don’t rely on rumors circulating in the neighborhood about how high a home sold. Prices tend to get inflated when passed from one person to another. Select your list price based on hard facts.