If they come, they might not buy it… It they buy it, they might not pay full price…
Today’s residential market may be the hottest since 2007 when all you needed to do was fog a mirror to qualify to buy a house. But that doesn’t mean sellers can skimp or take shortcuts with critical steps in the sales process and still expect top dollar for a fast sale.
First, not all markets are selling houses as fast as pancakes at a firemen’s benefit breakfast. Not marketing your home correctly in some markets will result in it being ignored. Even in hot markets, fast sales and bidding wars are reserved for homes that are properly prepared and promoted. Buyers paying prices above the asking price expect the home to be turnkey and ready to invite the family over to a celebratory party the day after moving in.
Pricing high and waiting for prices to catch up causes problems. For one, the longer it sits on the market, the more it becomes suspect of being a problem house as others around it sell faster. Also, once you have it in pristine condition and the longer it sits without selling, the more upkeep you’ll do waiting for prices to catch up. You’ll have those same two problems if you price it high and later reduce the price. Don’t allow your sentiments or personal attachment drive your pricing decision. Close to the comparables is where it will sell fast and qualify for a loan.
Consider and carefully review all offers that you receive. Even low-ball offers in a hot market may deliver a message that you need to hear. You can always ask what generated the low offer. Maybe a small improvement will make a big dollar difference. Or maybe the buyer isn’t tuned into the market and deserves to have his/her offer round filed. Just reading the entire offer and asking a question or two doesn’t obligate you to lower the price. If you have superior offers, you’ll clearly go with one of those. Still, don’t reject the low offer in an offensive way. The better deal isn’t done until money and signatures are exchanged at the closing table.
What else do you think makes houses pull in the best offers in a hot market? Please leave your comments below.
Author bio: Brian Kline has been investing in real estate for more than 35 years and writing about real estate investing for seven years. He also draws upon 30 plus years of business experience including 12 years as a manager at Boeing Aircraft Company. Brian currently lives at Lake Cushman, Washington. A vacation destination, a few short miles from a national forest. In the Olympic Mountains with the Pacific Ocean a couple of miles in the opposite direction.