As a Realtor for 33 years, I have pretty much heard it all - heard sellers share a lot of the same sentiments over the years.
I am going to list some of these famous last words,I have heard from SELLERS, and try to give a response based on my experience, and perspective as an agent.
1." I'm not going to give my house away"...... Well, the only way you are really "giving it away" is if someone offers you more money, you turn it down , and immediately sell it to someone else for less!! A house is only worth what a buyer will pay for it. You're not giving something away if no one is willing to pay more for it.
2. "Let them make me an offer"....... Guess what - they won't - not when it's newly listed and when the house is overpriced. Buyers will tend to wait for a reduction to a more reasonable list price before putting in a bid. No one wants to be the first person to give the seller a dose of reality.
3. "But, I need to net XXXX $"........... Buyers dont care what you need to net, nor do they care what you may have paid for the house, nor do they care how much you need to pay for that new house you want. Remember, it is only worth what the current market conditions dictate.
4 "I just spent XXX $ on new carpet"......Improvements don't necessarily give an instant return on your money, especially if those improvements are very personal - maybe that bright blue carpet or clown wallpaper in your baby's room wowed you, but it may not wow a buyer!
5. "I'm not in a rush" - "I have time"........"I can wait"......You don't need to be in a rush, but you DO need to be motivated. Why waste your time with an unrealistic price and the hassle of people coming through your home. Price it to sell - not languish! Longer length of time on the market doesn't equate with getting more money (if anything, the reverse is true).
6. "I don't have to sell".... That's great - so don't! If you overprice your home, and/don't have it in tip top selling condition, you won't sell it!!! If you're waiting for a martian to land and pay you an inflated, wishful number, don't waste your time - it's not going to happen. Remember, the bank's appraiser would have to agree with that Matian's inflated number in order for the buyer to be approved for the loan.
7. "Let's just try it at this price for a few weeks"....."We can always reduce it".....The most important time in selling a home is the first 2 weeks when you are fresh out of the starting gate and the buyer's enthusiasm is the highest - that's when it's important to make that great first impression - don't waste that time as an overpriced listing. It's so hard to play catch up, and chase the market if you miss that initial surge. It's like a tidal wave - you want to ride that crest, and you won't if you start off overpriced.
8. "I am selling this as is - I won't do any work"......You may feel that way, but if there are structural issues discovered after a home inspection , you will have to deal with them then, or disclose them to future buyers, which may cast a negative light on your home. It's better to be fleixible about how you will handle repairs, and be open to reasonable requests. You can always offer the buyers an appropriate credit at closing, rather than doing the actual repairs.
9. "I will not take a penny less than XXX $ "...... Do not paint yourself into a corner - be open to the offers you receive - remember, terms are as important as the number! Keep an open mind.
10. "I'll wait till next year to sell".....OK, if you're willing to wait a year, then do so. If, however, you think that by waiting you will get a higher selling price - the last time I checked my crystal ball, I couldn't predict that! Deal with the present, not what you hope the future will hold for you!
11. "My house is better than the neighbor's house".....It may be better in some ways, but the price your neighbor got for their similar home may very well influence what you will get. Everyone thinks their home is better!
12. "You didn't do enough open houses or print ads".....If only it were that easy! Print ads are the dinosaurs of today - the internet is where marketing dollars are directed. Close to 90% of buyers begin their search on the internet. Open houses rarely sell homes. They may bring in some new customers for the agent, or allow neighbors to view your home, but as a home selling tool, they are very ineffective (this may vary depending on where you are in the country, but it tends to be rather pervasive). The National Association of Realtors has a graph - a pie chart showing where the buyers come from, with the percentages. Open houses don't even make the chart!
Here are MY famous last words - It doesn't matter what I think your home may be worth - it doesn't matter what you think your home may be worth....(drumroll, please).......it ONLY MATTERS what a BUYER thinks it is worth, and will pay for it..... and then it's up to the appraiser to agree!
Happy house selling - hope your trip to the closing table is a smooth one!!!