Real Estate

Why has this house been on the market so long?

A buyer said to me the other day they liked this one house.  I looked it up.  They then asked how long it had been on the market. As a realtor I can see this on the MLS (Multi-listing Service). I said, 4 days, which is what it said.  My buyer said, “oh no I have seen this house before. I am sure it has been on the market before.”  So, I checked the history and sure enough this particular house had been on and off the market 3 other times over the course of the last year.  My client then wanted to know what was wrong with the house.  She wasn’t sure she wanted to waste her time actually going to look at the property.  She just wanted to know what was wrong with the property because someone would have, should have bought it if it was a good house. 

In the course of my career I have heard this same scenario play out several times.  If other homes are selling in 45 to 60 days or less and the very best homes are sold in less than 30 days, why has this house been on the market for a year with three different realtors attempting to sell it. Or the other question I get is, it’s been on the market for awhile, do you think the owner will take a low offer?

As a seller you want it to sell quickly and for the most money.  The very best offers are those that come quickly.  If the house is just sitting there and not selling, buyers are going to be asking questions just like my client.  

So what is a seller to do?

Your house should look like it is the best house on the market.  You can do that by making sure it is clean and move in ready and priced correctly.  If you don’t want to make repairs and want to sell it as is, then price it accordingly.  Everything sells for a price.  If the house is priced correctly and marketed effectively, it will sell.  Overpricing the house will always cause it to sit and become stale.  Homes priced at market value or slightly under will cause buyers to make offers.  An underpriced home will cause people to see the value and create a bidding war to bring the price back up.  You cannot underprice the house provided it is listed for the market to see in the MLS and is marketed effectively.

If the house isn’t selling, it is for one of two reasons—price or condition. Feedback is a good tool to know if there are items you need to fix. And remember, price fixes everything.  Although, I still contend it is sometimes less expensive to make repairs than to drop the price so that someone else is willing to do the repairs.

If you are interested in getting your house sold, please contact me to find out how I get homes sold for the most money in the least amount of time.  Sandi Walker  405-213-2992  or www.equityhomesteam.com

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Real Estate

I don’t want to give my house away.

Sellers seem to always want to list their homes for the most money possible.  They tell me, we can always come down, but you can’t go up.  Let’s start several thousand dollars higher than what the comparable homes are priced at and if we don’t sell it in a few weeks we can come down. Unfortunately, the sellers often don’t want to come down because at that point they have associated this inflated price as the value for their home.  The seller may decide to remain at that higher price for much longer than the realtor would suggest—holding out for the price they want.  Eventually the listing contract may expire and the seller feeling defeated and irritated with their current realtor who couldn’t get them the inflated price may employ another realtor.  Surely the second or third realtor will be able to get more money for them.

I tell sellers two things are true. First, something is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it. Regardless of what you believe it is worth or what I believe it is worth or what the comparable say, the consumer will eventually decide what the value of a home is worth.  An experienced and educated realtor will be able to advise the seller where to price the home to sell in a reasonable amount of time.  Second, you cannot underprice a property.  If you list a property slightly below market value (I am not talking about listing it at 50 cents on the dollar) and market the home effectively you will have multiple offers on the house.  The consensus will be market value.  There have been times when I have listed a home slightly under list price and then marketed it to the public in a way that causes multiple offers and a majority of the offers are for the exact same price. 

Recently, I had a home that was listed at $130,000. It needed some cosmetic work however the bones of the house were good.  The house would have been worth more money if it was updated.  The seller did not have the money to do the repairs.  I listed the house and held it open that first weekend. The seller instructed me they would look at offers after the open house.  We had 4 offers.  One was a low offer, two were identical and the one we took was slightly higher than the two that were identical.  The seller closed the house at $123,000 with no closing costs or repairs.

Another time, I had a house which we listed for $ 50,000. It also needed work.  We received 17 offers on the house and sold it for $60,000.  We had several offers at or around $60,000. We accepted the one that was willing to take the house without any contingencies.   

The point is you cannot under price a house.  The market will correct for that.  You can overprice a house and the market will respond with it sitting there unsold. Regardless of condition or location, there is a market value for all homes. My job as a licensed realtor is to help you determine accurate value so you can get the house sold for the most money in the quickest amount of time. 

If you are looking for an experienced realtor to guide you through the buying or selling process please contact me at 405-213-2992  or visit my website:  www.equityhomesteam.com

Real Estate

Stability in Homeownership

Recently I have had the opportunity to be involved in a transaction where a tenant had been living in a home for 16 plus years.  That person felt like the home was their own. They raised kids there, entertained there, and lived a good portion of their lives in that house.  They did not however own the property. The owner had been renting this property to them at a rate which was far below the market value and they had become accustom to this rent rate. Unfortunately, for this tenant life came to a huge reality check one day.  The owner was getting up in years and decided it was in his best interest to sell.  He gave them more than the required time to move by law to help them locate a new home and yet when the tenant started looking for a new rental they quickly became aware that the rent they had been paying was half or less of what something else would cost them to rent.

The market value of the house these tenants were living in had appreciated out of their price range and the tenant who had not been saving or preparing for the day they may have to move did not have the means to purchase the house.

We look at home ownership as a way to build wealth.  People always assume property will appreciate and for the most part it does.  They want something  to leave to the kids, a legacy—the family home. Perhaps they are looking for a way to shelter income and save money on their taxes.  The new tax law may make it so fewer people can deduct the mortgage interest from their taxes. The freedom of renting does allow you the opportunity to move if you don’t like the area or the neighbor.  

I think people think less about stability.  The fact is that if this tenant had purchased the home on a fix rate mortgage 16 plus years ago, the house payment today may not have been much more than what they are currently paying and they would not have to move because someone else was making the decision to sell and now the current value of the home precludes them from buying it. They would be in control of this decision. I personally think the power to choose whether I sell and move or not, is priceless.

The value of being a homeowner is sometimes measured in things far beyond what is first presented.

If you are thinking about buying or selling, please feel free to contact me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website:  www.equityhomesteam.com