I am interested in a home that is grossly overpriced. Several home values webites estimate the house at almost 400,000 below asking. Any advice?

Asked by Ginger, 08043 Mon Nov 29, 2010

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Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Tue Nov 30, 2010
Hi Ginger, I agree that you want to work with the online estimates with caution - they are off the mark as often as they are on. But you are on to something, and that is the a "well constructed and credible" market analysis is what you need. As with any analysis its value and credibility comes from the integrity of the input. A great buyers agent is what you need - to help you evaluate this property and any others, to negotiate and usher your transactions to close.

A solid market analysis will immediately flush out over-pricing, and while a $400,000 gap seems huge, it is possible. It will also help you identify properties that are priced really well, and they are out there too and move fast.

Overpricing is the biggest marketing blunder a seller can make, and I still see plenty of it in the market. This analysis will guide you and support your offer. I have mine at the ready when I present an offer to support my "....let me show you why we believe our offer is a fair one." An offer that is supported by the facts of the market is far more likely to succeed that one that is not. Put another way, while I cannot guarantee a seller will accept, it is tough for him to run from the facts of the market.

Sounds like you've found a potentially great deal - align yourself with great resources - starting with an agent that has the analytic abilities to produce a great market analysis, proven negotiation skills, communication and servicing standards that meet your expecctations (and keep those high - we are out there!), and references that they will share so you can affirm her claims.

Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service
Web Reference:  http://www.feenick.com
1 vote
Michael Gard…, Agent, Philadelphia, PA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Hi Ginger,

My advice is that you should be working with a really knowledgeable and experienced buyer agent who is working for your interests only, and not be relying on information on consumer websites. Before you buy any property, you need to know the value of all the recently sold comparative properties, no website can do that for you. Feel free to contact me.

Best regards,

Michael Garden
2200 Walnut
Philadelphia 19103
215 500 2981
Web Reference:  http://www.michaelgarden.com
1 vote
Suzanne MacD…, Agent, Morristown, NJ
Sun Dec 5, 2010
I see that you are from New Jersey. We have to be very careful in using sites other than the Multiple Listing Service when estimating home values here in New Jersey. There are certain aspects of zillow, etc, that just do not comport well with the way we do business here in New Jersey. I work in the Lake Hopatcong area. These websites do not take into consideration the lake front aspect of the properties here and thus they vastly underestimate the value. You may be experiencing a similar situation.

You really do need to work with a local realtor and ask them to provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis to help guide you in estimating the value of the home in which you are interested. It is the only way to do a proper analysis here,

Good Luck and if I can be of assistance, please feel free to contact me.

0 votes
Gita Bantwal, Agent, Jamison, PA
Sun Dec 5, 2010
You have received good advice from others. Are you working with an agent ? Is the property listed in mls ? Your agent can do the coms for you . Most agents give sellers a market analysis whe listing the home and may not take overpriced listings. Is it sale by owner?
It is true you may not get good estimate f value fromsome sites . You can have an appraisal contingency when you make an offer.
Web Reference:  http://www.gtabantwal.com
0 votes
Joe White, Agent, Philadelphia, PA
Thu Dec 2, 2010
I just attended a Zillow presentation today. Did you ever notice the fine print at the bottom of their page (see link). Turns out their (and most automated value sites) consider their estimates accurate if they are within 20% of the true value in just 80% of their estimates. The rep explained that no algorithm can account for trees, setbacks, closeness to parks, shopping, etc. In other words, these automated value systems are great price trend guides but often miss true value.

My philosophy is "seek first to understand, then be understood". It sounds like you need someone to listen to your concerns and provide professional feedback.

Joe 215 266 7227
0 votes
Antoinette H…, , Philadelphia, PA
Tue Nov 30, 2010

What is the specific zip code of the home you are interested in? If that information is provided by you, I will be able to let you know if the property is listed to high for the area.

Antoinette M Harris
Alliance Real Estate
0 votes
Eileen Gray, , Philadelphia County, PA
Tue Nov 30, 2010
Be careful, unless you are buying in one of the sand states, I find it highly unlikely that the home is $400,000 under market. Many of these tax sites you are reviewing maybe assessing from the boom years so don't trust the tax assessment sites since they maybe behind the times. Any other sites that you may be visiting have comps but be careful to locate comps of like properties, same square footage and six months ago or sooner when they sold. If you would like to know more about how to buy undervalued properties, I consider myself a specialist in this field. Please give me a call to know more.


Eileen Gray
Century 21 Alliance
0 votes
Monica Flor…, Agent, Langhorne, PA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Hi, Ginger,

You have just proposed a perfect situation wherein hiring a buyer's agent would be extremely beneficial. An experienced buyer agent will conduct a market analysis, provide you with all the necessary information you need to make an informed decision, and negotiate the best possible price and terms on your behalf.

My contact information is listed below. Please call me.

Monica Flores, ASR, SRES
Remax Affiliates NE
0 votes
Sunny Guleria, Agent, Huntingdon Valley, PA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Hi Ginger
Try this website
Http:// http://www.mymegarealty.com
You can get a complete market snapshot of what sold around in the market and what is available with comps around the area.
Please feel free to call me
Sunny Guleria
Mega Realty LLC
Office: 215-947-0575
Fax: 215-947-4045
Direct: 215-947-0575 ext 102
Cell :267-438-5252
Add: 380 red lion Rd,
Suite 104,
huntingdon Valley,
Pa 19006
0 votes
Keith J. Law…, Agent, Philadelphia, PA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Hello Ginger,

I do alot of business in the Germantown Area. Feel free to call me and I would be happy to answer any questiosn you may have. You can reach me directly at 267-688-1110.

Warm Regards,


Keith J. Lawson
RE/MAX Affiliates N.E.
9237 Frankford Ave.
Phila, PA 19114
267-688-1110 (cell)
215-992-5534 (office)
LawsonRE@gmail.com (email)
http://www.keithlawsonhomes.com (web)
Member- N.A.R.,P.A.R.,G.P.A.R
Member - AREAA Philadelphia Metro
0 votes
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Home Value Websites are interesting and worth looking at, but they readily admit they are not the final answer to a home’s value. It's possible the homes tax records, typically used to base the valuations on, does not reflect additions, upgrades or improvements. It's also possible that the homeowner and their agent are just overpricing the home to see if anyone bites.
First get an agent who will represent you and do the research on the home. If the value, based on your agents Comparative Market Analysis is closer to the websites, decide if you want to make an offer anyway.
0 votes
Peter Lavelle, Agent, Philadelphia, PA
Mon Nov 29, 2010
Good Evening Ginger,

What websites are you using? A local real estate agent should be able to help you in proper pricing for the area.
0 votes
Dusty Rhoton, Agent, Flagstaff, AZ
Mon Nov 29, 2010
I have had this come up several times in the past and have found the best way to deal with this type of scenario is to have your realtor present the offer and on the cover sheet, use the verbiage, "This offer is based upon the most recent comparable similiar sales in the subject property neighborhood of homes" .

Typically, homes grossly overpriced won't be getting any offers, showings, etc., and when the buyer FINALLY gets one with this type of verbiage - it usually gets them thinking about their listing price and they now know you and your agent have done your homework. Good Luck!
0 votes
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