Six myths that plague sellers:
- Let’s price the home above market value and see what happens. Buyers love to negotiate and think they are getting a bargain!
- If I stand my ground, the buyer will eventually come to my price. So there!
- If we price the home right at market value, we will be leaving money on the table. Oh no!
- If I don’t get the price I want this spring, I’ll relist in the fall. No worries.
- A low ball offer isn’t worth countering. Don’t waste my time….
- My homes needs updates, but the buyers will look past that. Won’t they?
Let’s debunk these myths right now! Getting to the truth now will save time and money when you list your house. This is the first of 3 articles about myths that keep home sellers from getting great deals quickly and easily!
1. Let’s price the home above market value and see what happens. Buyers love to negotiate and think they are getting a bargain!
Granted, there is some truth to the idea that everyone loves a bargain, but that assumes buyers won’t be put off by the asking price and exclude your home from their search. The vast majority of sellers won’t look too far beyond their comfortable price range. And, they won’t want to waste time looking at something the bank won’t qualify them for. So overpricing your home will actually deter buyers.
This is not to say that you don’t want to leave a little wiggle room for the deal seekers. You also may need to make concessions for unexpected repairs discovered by the home inspection. (Which makes the case for a pre-listing inspection. But more on that at another time.)
But don’t be greedy, my dear sellers. (Remember this: Pigs get fat, but hogs get slaughtered!). The market is driven by what similar properties are selling for, or comps. Comps are easier to find than ever …. they are found on the local MLS, Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com and assessor’s websites, etc. Buyers and the realtors will find them. You can’t hide from the market. Work with it, not against it.
Take Away 1: You can’t negotiate with a buyer who never comes to see your house. Price it appropriately from the get-go.
2. If I stand my ground, the buyer will eventually come to my price.
I wish this was true! Self-proclaimed negotiation gurus often spew this kind of advice: never split the difference; always be willing to walk away; aim high and expect the best.
I respectfully disagree. Unless you are in a multiple offer situation, the seller usually has to negotiate on price, at least a little. Nothing is worse that letting a buyer walk away, assuming there will be more on the doorstep tomorrow, only to see an empty doorstep tomorrow after tomorrow after tomorrow.
In my world, we often split the difference. We often decide to not walk away but to submit another counter offer. And while we expect the best, we settle on reasonable.
Take Away 2: If you arbitrarily stand your ground, you may end up standing…all…alone!
Watch for upcoming posts on Myths 3-6!