Aren’t we in a slow real estate market? Isn’t this a buyer’s market? Isn’t the ball in my court? These are the kind of questions going through all buyers minds these days as they look for houses. The answers are yes, it is slower than in the past, it is in general a buyer’s market, and the ball is in your court……unless you want one of the best houses on the market. That little twist changes a lot of things. See, I have been in more multiple offer situations this year than ever before…….two just this week! Why? I guess because I have been working with people with good taste and who listen to my advice on neighborhoods (or so I think!)
Here is a little story on one of them: We find a nice house that was way over-priced in a great neighborhood. I do a CMA and determine the value. My folks don’t want to make an offer because the asking price was sooo much more than the actual value…..like almost $50k more. A week or so later I get a call from the listing agent telling me that the price is going to be dropped by almost $40k. We write an offer. Well, it appears we weren’t the only ones who wanted the house and thought it was over-priced, because along came somebody else. (If you are a seller, this just goes to show that buyers know what your house is worth and usually don’t like to throw out a realistic offer when you are waaaay over the top.) The fun thing about this house is that there have only been 43 houses in this price range sell in all of Lexington since Jan. 1 of this year. There are 103 active listings on the market right now. You would think that NO house in this price range would have multiple offers, but it just goes to show that everybody always wants the best one they can get. That is why there are “Waits” at nice restaurants and you never see Mercedes-Benz offer 0% financing.
So, if you are a seller, my advice is to price your house realistically and do things to really make it show well. FYI: I have a client right now that has seen dozens of houses and wants me to blog about what a turn off a dirty house is to buyers……and that fresh paint makes a house look so much better. So there, you have had a real buyer in today’s market tell you what little things you can do to try to get a contract on your house.
My advice to a buyer depends on what kind of buyer you are. If you’re the type that doesn’t have to have the most updated and move in ready house on the market, then you have a little more leverage since there aren’t many of you out there like that! If you are the type who wants the WOW! Factor, then you’ll need to act fast since every other like-minded buyer is going to want the same house.
Coming Next week: Ever see a house sell for waaaay more than anybody thinks it is worth? I got a good story about one!