Selling a house is as much an art as it is a science. A good Realtor knows what the local market is like, and what the results have been to comparable listings in the neighborhood.
The Sticker Effect
One of the first things buyers consider is their price range. It is a key piece of information in their searches, and one of the first things they tell their agent. Of course, land, location, school districts, walkability, safety, and everything else a buyer can think of may or may not wind up on that list–but for most people that list is defined by what they can afford.
Again, every market is different, but typically people will have a fair expectation of what they might find in a 2000 square foot home in the area that lists at $165,000 compared to another home of the same size listing at $395,000. The price sets an anchor point in the buyers mind.
When listing your home, getting in the right bracket can help you attract the right buyers more easily. If your home is similar to several in the area, but has many extra features and a desirable location, then sitting at the upper end of a bracket makes sense.
Brackets are usually blocks of numbers of 25 or 50 thousand; home prices are typically thought of as been in the 225 to 250 range or 375 to 425. If your home is a bit dated, or needs some attention, sitting at the top of a bracket will often times attract buyers who are expecting something that is not there, and can mean you are waste time in finding your buyer.
An experienced Realtor will help set a good price designed to move your house efficiently. If you are willing to be very patient, perhaps you can list a bit higher, but that will not always work. Likewise sometimes a Realtor will price a bit low if there are not many comparable listings in the area in an attempt to start a bidding war.
Sometimes a seller has a number in their mind, or they just choose a number that is not realistic. When that happens one of two things usually come out of it. Many showing requests that generate little if any interest, or no showing requests at all.
It is common wisdom that typically the first 45 days on the market are crucial in the process of selling a home. If a seller lists too high and has to lower the price, the buyers and agents in the area assume there is something ‘wrong’ with the home and will stay away.
A professional Realtor will help you with ideas for staging your home in the best light, point out some easy fix-ups you can do make to increase appeal, and of course price your home appropriately. While we always say there is a buyer for every home, getting the price right is a big part of finding one quickly.