Sunday, November 2, 2008

Stop Dreaming and Sell Your House Now

Any home will sell, given enough time. How much time do you have?

One of the most frustrating things about selling a home, condo, townhouse during a slow market is trying to price it so that it sells in the amount of time the owner wants to sell it in.

You don?t want price your property so high that it doesn?t sell.

Of course you don?t want to price it so low that you unknowingly give money away to your buyer.

This is a fine line that a property seller ends up walking.

Here is what I suggest a home seller do to find the best sales price for their home given the amount of time that they have to sell:

?Get Three CMA?s:

Call three real estate agents that have at least two years of real estate sales experience. Tell them you are thinking of selling your property and want to get a CMA (CMA: Comparative Market Analysis). A CMA will be a written estimate of the value of your property based on recently sold properties that are similar to yours. Be sure and let the agents know that you are talking to other real estate agents.

Between the three values you should be able to get a fairly good idea of what your home might sell for.

Heads Up:
There may be other homes in your neighbor that are for sale. Don?t confuse their asking prices for actual home values. Home sellers can ask any price for their home. Values are figured strictly by what similar homes have sold for.

Heads Up:
It is fairly likely that one of the agents may have set the CMA value considerably higher than the other two. This may be due to negligence on their part, but it is more likely that they are ?buying the listing?. They set the CMA price high in an effort to get you to list with them. Later they will pressure you to lower your price to where it should have been in the first place. Of course by now they have wasted your time while you waited for your over-priced home to sell. I have seen this over and over again. This is a common ploy. Don?t get taken by this deception.

?How long will it take to sell?

When you have figured out what seems to be a good asking price for your home, you will have a good idea which agent you would like to use to help get your home sold.

Ask your agent how long other homes like yours have taken to sell. Let?s imagine that the average ?days on the market? (Days on the market: number of days a home takes to sell after it is put up for sale) is 120 days. If you are not in a hurry this may sound just right to you.

What if you need or want to sell faster than our 120 day example? Let?s say you have a new job that starts in 90 days in a new city. It usually takes 30 days to ?close the sale? (close the sale: sign the final documents transferring title to the buyer), after your home ?goes under contract? (goes under contract: you have a buyer that wants to buy, has signed a sales contract with you, and is in the process of getting a loan). You realize that you need to find your buyer in no more than 60 days after you put it up for sale.

You are going to have to ask your agent to give you an idea of where to price your home so that it sells (goes under contract) in 90 days. Hopefully they can come up with a fairly good idea of the 90 day sales price.

What I might do, if I were your agent, is to figure out what the highest selling price you could ask, so that you could sell your home in one day. Then figure out the seven days selling price, a 30 days selling price, and then a 90 days selling price.

For example:

?Let?s say the 120 day sales price for your home is $275,000.

?Then given one day to sell your home, you might be able to get $200,000 (30% below market value).

?Given a week you could probably sell your home for $225,000 (20% below market value).

?30 days sales price: $240,000 (15% below market).

?And finally, 60 days sales price: $255,000 (8% below market value).

?Priced at $255,000, your home will look like a bargain to a home buyer, and you are more likely to get a faster sale.

In a slow market you have to be willing to lower your asking price, maybe more than once in order to get your home sold in a timely manner. Be prepared mentally for this possibility and your home selling process will be smoother and faster.

Don Glasgow is a real estate agent in St. George, Utah. Don has been helping home sellers and homebuyers since 1999. Please visit his website to learn more: , ,

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