When thinking of selling your home, or any piece of real estate, you obviously want to get top dollar. Homes are the largest financial asset for most families, so you can’t afford to sell at a price that’s less than ideal. One of the keys is getting the price right at the outset so you don’t end up negotiating down too much…but you also don’t want to lowball yourself by listing too low.
Deciding to sell with a licensed real estate broker is one of the best ways to increase the amount your home sells for. Studies show that homes listed with agents net 25% more for the seller than homes not listed with agents. But how do you know if you’re choosing the right agent and if that agent will get you the most for your home?
When starting the selling process, you should interview several Gresham real estate agents, unless of course you have a family member or friend you can trust. When you meet with these agents, all of them will offer to do a comparative market analysis on your home to determine its value. These are based on current market data, but ultimately it boils down to the Realtors’ opinions of how much your home is worth.
What sometimes surprises people is when a Gresham home valuation comes back at a drastically different value. How is this possible?
Comps Aren’t Really Comps
The first reason for this is when agents view your home differently. Have all the agents viewed your home in person? If not, then that might be a big part of these discrepancies.
Look at comparable homes this agent provides. Do they look like your home, do they have the same fixtures and finishes, is the square footage comparable? How about the number of bathrooms and bedrooms? If one stands out to you as being too dissimilar, ask the agent if he made any price adjustments to reflect the differences. These may be displayed right in the report so check there first.
The flip side of this is to keep in mind that your Gresham Realtor may have toured these other homes as well as your own, so he may be more intimately familiar with the market, leading to a valuation that is right on the money, versus other agents you’ve interviewed who may be less experienced or less busy in the market.
The second possibility is that they could be hoping to get you to list at a certain price because it’s lower than the true value so it would be a quick easy sale (and pay day) for them. Sometimes a bidding war can happen, but not as often as the TV would have you believe.
If you’re eager to sell, pricing low might be a strategy to consider, but values that are vastly different between the agents you’re interviewing is still problematic.
Gresham Real Estate Agents with Wishful Thinking
Third possibility – an agent could be telling you a price in hopes that you will pick her or him based on the value presented. A lot of times, this is the case if an agent’s price is drastically higher than the others’. It’s simple ego-stroking.
When it comes to listing prices, agents know that if it won’t sell at their optimistically high price, they will most likely be able to get you to drop it down to where it should have been after a few months. This could have a detrimental effect on the amount your home eventually ends up selling for. Here’s a link (click here) to another article that explains why pricing your home too high could end up costing you more than expected.
How to Handle These Discrepancies
These pricing fails do happen in the industry – real estate pricing is truly both an art and a science. There are also bad apples in every line of work; when money is involved it can bring out the worst. In real estate, that usually means the lazy or incompetent. How can you protect yourself against this?
Your first line of defense is to forget about Zillow and any other quick-quote Internet site for determining your home’s value. These websites are all based off of computer algorithms. Your home is unique, and a computer program isn’t able to see attributes such as how well it has been maintained, the upgrades you’ve done inside, or even the curb appeal. There is also an emotional aspect to buying that algorithms completely ignore but that your Gresham Realtor would definitely be able to quantify.
More importantly, talk to these agents. Develop relationships with them. You should quickly be able to tell if they have your family’s best interests as their highest priority. Ask a lot of questions and go with your gut.
I hope this was helpful in your quest to sell a home. If you’re in Gresham home valuation is something I can do at no cost to you and I’ll make sure you understand WHY I believe that’s the best price for your home. Contact me today and let’s talk!