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REALTOR® RE/MAX 100 Springfield, VA Licensed in VA www.traister.com

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Why is a Dip in Existing Home Sales Good News for Sellers?

A report published recently in The Washington Post noted that interest rates are rising and that pending home sales have dipped recently. Sounds like bad news, right?

If you're thinking about selling, this is actually really good news.

The reason home sales have been down recently is because there just isn't enough inventory to meet demand. In the areas where I work, if a home comes on the market and is priced competitively, it's under contract in a matter of days -- and often at a price higher than the listing price.

Think of it this way: there's a hot new toy, like the Fidget Spinner. Everyone wants it, but most stores sold out last week and don't expect more until next month. If you look at sales reports for Fidget Spinners for this month, you'll see a dip in the number of sales. If you happen to have a Fidget Spinner to sell, you'll probably be able to sell it for a price that's higher than the retail price.

With interest rates on the rise, buyers want to lock in NOW before they go any higher. And when inventories are low, it's not uncommon to receive multiple offers on a competitively-priced home and even see bidding wars.

According to the WaPo article, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has increased its estimate for home sales growth in 2017 from 2.5% to 3.5%, and home prices are expected to rise 5% -- another increase from the 3.5% projected by NAR at the end of last year.

If you're thinking about selling, contact me today. I'll do a comparative market analysis to show you what comparable homes in your area have sold for over the past six months, prices for currently-listed homes, and what your home could sell for in the current market.  

Rob Traister
RE/MAX 100
Licensed in VA
(703) 935-6891

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Don't Always Believe Prices You See Online

Last year I met with a potential client who was thinking about making a move from a home in a very desirable neighborhood in Alexandria. I showed him comps for his home -- nearby homes that are comparable in size, amenities, and style, and are active or have sold recently -- and told him the price he could expect in the current market.

He mentioned that a website (rhymes with "Pillow") showed the estimated price of his home as being higher than the one I recommended. I explained that the estimated prices shown on that site tend to be off by 5% or more in our market.

He said when he was ready to make a move he would let me know.

A few months later I saw that home was on the market for $30,0000 more than the market will support in that neighborhood. After two months on the market, the price has been reduced $80,000 -- $50,000 below the market value -- and still has no buyers.

Pricing your home correctly can be the difference between selling and not selling, or having to sell at a price that is below market value. It's that important.

If the home is priced too high, buyers who are looking at homes in that price range will dismiss it, and buyers looking below that price range won't even see it. And if you do manage get an contract at a price that is above market value, most contracts have a clause that allows the buyer to back out if the home doesn't appraise for the contract price.

The longer a home sits on the market, the harder it is to sell. In this market, many homes are under contract in a matter of days or weeks; if a home has been on the market for months it raises red flags and potential buyers pass it over in favor of newer listings.

By not pricing the home correctly from the outset, the seller I mentioned earlier will ultimately leave tens of thousands -- perhaps even $100,000 -- on the table that could have been in his pocket. Had he priced the home correctly, he would have had more showings and might have even seen multiple offers, resulting in a higher sales price.

When I price your home, I give you all the market data at my disposal to help you make the best decision so you can sell quickly, and at the best possible price.

If you have any questions about the real estate market in Northern Virginia, give me a call or send an email. I'd love to hear from you.