New Rules for Critical Pricing
As inventory of homes nears 10-year high, pricing becomes trickier, relocating is trickier. As housing markets cool, new tactics are recommended:
Price homes in the bottom 25% of comparable properties.
First time buyers should not over stretch finances, expecting rising prices.
Relocaters should look for a home that will be easy to resell if transferring again soon.
The number of houses for sale is up 30% compared to last year according to the National Association of Realtors. The group predicted home sales would drop close to 6% in 2006 compared to a 4.4% gain in 2005. High mortgage rate have also made houses less affordable, with variable rates moving up the fastest!
Sellers need to make sure their house comes across as a good value compared to other homes on the market. Pricing is absolutely critical now. Ceiling height, quality of renovations, and first impression with curb appeal and front entrance are vital considerations today. Some sellers are even turning to stagers to give their property a better personality! Today, computers are used to screen listings based on price, size and other parameters. Price needs to drop about 4% if the listing does not generate several showings within about 3 weeks.
Buyers have the opportunity to be more thoughtful about their purchases and can negotiate for a lower price, a more flexible move in date, or incentives such a seller paid closing costs.
My advice: If you have any way not to sell right now, don't!