Wonderhouse, Home Seller in Mountain Home, ID

We have had 10 showings on our house but not one offer. House is reasonably priced under its value. We

Asked by Wonderhouse, Mountain Home, ID Tue Apr 28, 2009

thought we would have at least one offer by now. Home has been on market for 3 months. What to do?

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The problem is that most home sellers are pricing their homes too high. They lower the price later, but by then the market has fallen farther. We have a term for that "chasing the market".

So, what to do?

Do you absolutely need to move? What alternatives do you have?
If you need to move, can you rent it out instead of selling? Check with your CPA on the tax implications. That happened to my wife and I, 18 years later we sold the property for a lot of money.

If you do need to sell, then price the property slightly BELOW market. Hopefully you will attract multiple offers and you will be able to sell for the best price.

Buyers are in control. I work with buyers occasionally, and their current attitude is: unless it scream BUY ME I am going to wait because I don't have to buy right now and I think that prices are going down.

Who can argue with that logic?

I would ask your Realtor to show you, since your home hit the market, how many homes, like yours, have:
come onto the market
Lowered their price
Entered escrow

The truth is that homes are selling...just not yours. Price is right, and it will sell. In most areas the market is active enough where very few homes will actually sell below market.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 28, 2009
Keith Sorem, Real Estate Pro in Glendale, CA
Ask your agent if he/she has any suggestions. Sometimes simple things like having the carpets cleaned, and rearranging/decluttering can make a big difference to buyers. I would also double check your price against the competition. Try to look at your house objectively. You may need to lower the price. Try not to worry. Our market is slowly starting to pick up.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 28, 2009
Your question raises many questions. The first and most vital is this: What does your agent say? If you don't have one, then you might want to familiarize yourself with the benefits of getting one.

Now to more directly answer your question, as best I can (not having the details of your situation):
1) In three months you should have more than 10 showings. Something is wrong in the marketing of your house; your agent will want to address that. If YOU are your own agent, then YOU will want to address that.
2) Your house is most likely NOT "reasonably priced under it's value." I say this because the very definition of market value is (to put it simply, but not completely) what someone will pay. If you've had no offers, your price is almost definitely too high.
3) What you (or your agent) must do is either lower your price to the actual market value OR raise the home's value to your price. I'll give you a hint here: it's amazing the return you can get on "sweat equity."
4) If you can determine (and it's not hard to do, but must be done correctly) the true market value of your house and it is priced correctly, then you need to examine other possible causes, such as stigmatism or poor public perception.
5) I'll tell you a huge secret, that most people don't know; adjusting the commission on the "sales" side can cause a huge and sudden movement of your house on the market! Talk to your agent about this! They have no motivation to mislead you, for it doesn't affect their income in most cases. Usually the one who lists your house is not the one who is ultimately the "selling agent," so they do not benefit if they aren't receiving that portion of the commission. However, even just 1/2 or 1% bump in commission to the selling agent can make the difference between your house being the first house they show and it being the 20th. Guess which one sells first. Guess why you might not have much activity at your place. It just could be that your house simply doesn't stand out. Think about which is more; that small bump in commission or the three house payments you've made while hoping for a buyer... not to mention the payments you'll make between now and when the house sells!

It's all just food for thought. Be sure to look at the bottom line, not just the math in between! Strategic pricing and commission structuring will put money in your pocket when the day is over. Try to realize that sometimes you give a little to get a lot.

Further advice: the first 30 days your house is on the market is very telling and a critical time period. If you're not getting any interest (read: offers) in that time period, re-evaluate what you're doing and make changes quickly. You have to understand that by the time 3 months have passed, people have seen your house out there and know that it's not selling; your home pretty much loses value the longer it's on the market AND your bottom line becomes weaker at the same time. Your agent should understand this and act accordingly. If you don't have representation, then you are NOT saving money; you're just prolonging the agony so that you can eventually sell for less and wonder why the whole time. The result: more aggrevation, less money, little satisfaction (would you rather put more money in your pocket and get it over with or would you rather have the bragging rights that you, against all odds, sold it yourself? Because a person who's stubborn enough CAN eventually sell it themself, usually at the cost of a much reduced bottom line and huge taxing on their sanity.).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 28, 2009
How is your agent marketing your home right now? Is it getting traffic on mls? are there other places it is listed...with Mountain Home there are other media devices specifically geared towards the air force and those relocting to Mountain Home. Also Sharon is right, how is it showing with buyers? Are there unfinished home projects? Clutter? etc., sometimes those areas block a buyer's perspective and gets in the way of a buyer feeling like your home could become their home...buyers are still buying on moods and feelings.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 28, 2009
Most areas are declining markets. I am sorry, but if you priced your home 3 months ago and haven't adjusted it, you may be overpriced. Remember, you're not the one that has to think it's a value - the buyers do.

The National Assoc of REALTORS says it takes 30 showings to get a contract. Personally, I think that is VERY high - but that is based on averages and averages, in my opinion, aren't reflective of a professionally positioned home.

In my area, I say you need 10 showings to get an offer, and the 10 shows need to come in less than 30 days. You MAY need more than 1 offer to ratify, but that's reflective of today's wackiness within the market... and you may even need to ratify more than 1 because loans fall apart every day now with appraisal issues or job losses. There are regional differences. So, talk to your agent.

Chances are, it's your price. I am sorry. But, the longer you wait to find out if I am right the lower your price will have to go to sell. So, hurry.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 28, 2009
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