There is an interesting thread on whether or not a seller should take the first offer. Much of what I wrote on that thread, I would repeat here. Offers made early during the listing period generally come in stronger and higher than offers which surface later in the lisitng period. Since you indicated that you have received offers, I thought you might be interested in that thread.
There are several other good points made on that thread that may be helpful for you, so rather than rewriting much of the same text here as my response, I am including the link.
A market is determined by what a willing buyer is prepared to spend and what a willing seller is prepared to accept. If you are not finding a willing buyer, the market is telling you something. You need to reconsider your strategy. Take your home off the market and wait for values to rise.
You could also look at the sale of your home in a different light. Sell it at what you consider to be a loss and go find a replacement home another home owner considers to be selling at a lost. Chances are you will be getting ahead!
Facing reality is difficult. Fighting a down trend in the market just doesn't work. I've lived through the ups and downs of the real estate market and can tell you from experience, this too shall pass.
It might be buyers are trying to take advantage because they know it is a buyer's market and looking for a steal. A good thorough analysis of the local market will help better determine if your gut feeling is right. Be aware of the market around you and watch it closely and/or have your broker advise you weekly with updated statistics.
My only concern is when you do get your asking price will it appraise? As a listing broker I have set square footage records for neighborhoods but the appraiser held my feet to the fire and made me work for it by proving why the house was worth more than similar properties. With all the lending problems we're seeing appraisals are being scutinized far more than they already were.
Best of luck!
May I suggest that your difficulty may be the result of poor negotiating skills. If you have received more than one offer, you are being told that your house is in better condition.
Let's say you think your home is worth $400,000. Let's hope the average list to sell ratio in your area is about 95% (find out for sure). You should therefore have listed you home for about $425,000. If you were correct, your first offer might be $375,000. You would then negotiate to reach a final price of $400,000.
But lets say your offers are coming in at $350,000 because that is the average. You are insulted and refuse to negotiate. Yet, if you do negotiate, you might end up with a final price of $375,000 which would be $25,000 HIGHER than the average. Again, they are telling you that your home is worth more.
It is fair for you to hold out for more than the average but it is not reasonable to hold out for more than current market conditions.
Wihout knowing what your motivation is, it's a hard question to answer. The press has convinced buyers to hold off for better deals. This constant message has buyers thinking they can do better the longer they wait. If this continues you will need to lower your price to get your home sold. So I would carefully consider offers based on your short and long term plans.
I've been advising my sellers that are also buying that they will likely settle on something at a good price. So things may balance out.
Coldwell Banker Madison, Connecticut
Unfortunately, no matter how beautiful your home may be, if it is among a sea of less-than-average homes, those homes do have an effect on the general property values of an area. And while it can be to your advantage to have your home be the one that stands out (i.e., you've apparently received multiple offers), the bottom line is that your home is still located where it is located, and that cannot be changed.
To illustrate, an antecdote for you: A friend of mine (she was not my client) lived in an area of Chicago that boasts mostly older, in-need-of-update homes. It is not an area not generally known for excellent schools or particularly great amenities. In short: The area was o.k, but certainly not a highly desired area of Chicagoland.
She was relocating to another state and put her home on the market with an area Realtor. The year prior to putting her home on the market, she and her husband had undertaken a HUGE remodeling project of their home, pouring almost $100K into serious upgrades. Her home was gorgeous!
But, it was still in the same area.
And when it came time to sell her home, it certainly stood out as "one of the best".
But nobody wanted to pay the price she was asking. Why would they when, well, it was in this area?
She did receive what I thought was a very strong offer within a couple of weeks on the market, but she rejected it (she did counter, but the buyer knew the market and walked away). She KNEW she could do better. After all, look at that kitchen! And those bathrooms! And that brand new deck!
The home ended up on the market for over a year.
She ended up selling for way way WAY less than she had hoped for.
The first offer had been only $25,000 under ask.
So, moral to my story? Be sure you are being realistic about the value of your home and how it compares to the **overall total** value of your neighborhood. And be willing to negotiate!
Best of luck to you (and sorry this got so long)!
It is fair for you to hold for more, but the buyers are not thinking logically.
I hate to tell you but you and I are in the same boat. It doesn't matter that we have the best house on the block. We may tweak a bit above the average but we are not going to sell for much more than the average in this market. Holding out for more will hurt more in the long run. You either are paying monthly mortgage payments or you have that money in savings - either way - it is costing you more money to hang on to that house than letting it go and use the money you get to invest in something else.
It is a risk that you have to weigh and is a personal decision.
Red Bluff, CA
The problem with holding out for a price above the average is that the averages can still go down. The best bet is to accept the most acceptable offer you receive and RUN. This neighborhood is sure to have more foreclosures/HUDS/short sales.
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask!
For your own sake - don't FIGHT a downward moving market - you will lose.
TAKE IT! Take Something!
Move on and take advantage of the absolute buys that are available out there right now.
Don't let another offer pass you by. Do you know how fortunate you are?
Who cares about the average.?!? Get your home sold and MOVE ON!