Getting What you Want as a Seller

Seasonality of the MarketWhile Richmond’s spring real estate market was fast-paced and a definitive sellers’ market, the summer is showing us that not all sellers are able to get what they want after all.

You may be in the position where you saw the house next door pop on the market, get 10 offers, and go under contract in a 24-hour time frame . . . so, that got your wheels turning and you decided to take the plunge and dive on into the land of prepping your home to sell.  You did all of the things that every good seller knows to do!  (Good for you!)  You went ahead and you:

  • Painted the exterior of your home and touched-up spots indoors;
  • Had your home pre-inspected and made sturdy, thoughtful repairs;
  • Took a page out of KBREG’s Staging 101 handbook, and you stored your grandma’s figurine collection;
  • Purged and packed and donated and stored items;
  • Pulled out your green thumb and got to work on landscaping;
  • Researched Zillow for comps and priced your home accordingly;
  • Spread the word to neighbors and friends of your cute house for sale

And despite your hard work and your efforts, it’s looking like (cue the Rolling Stones):  You can’t always get what you want!  For some reason, your home is sitting on the market and the activity and frenzy that accompanied your neighbor’s home doesn’t seem to have trickled over into your yard just yet.  So, what to do?  What to do?

Let us help you.

Let’s start by discussing “comps” or comparative market analyses.  Most likely, dear seller, you picked one “comp” that you liked–that was priced high, seemed somewhat of a parallel to your house and seemed like a good (read: high) price for your home, and you went with it.  Most likely, our lovely buyers are doing the same thing in the opposite direction:  they are picking a home that seems (to them) like a parallel to your home that has a nice (read: low) price point, and they are working with those numbers.

Let’s remind you both:  The sales price and accompanying information from one home provide a point of data–worth taking note of, but not worthy of being the backing of an entire sales strategy.  A series of data–several similar homes selling within the same range?  Now, that is what we call a market trend.  And, that is worth considering when pricing your home and when making an offer (especially an offer in an otherwise competitive market).

While market trends are certainly helpful, one factor that is of paramount importance when buying and selling a home is to recognize the seasonality of the market.  What does that mean, you ask?  Well, right now, it’s August.  We have great, strong comps from the spring market.  You could certainly try to use those to price your home, but that will likely be unhelpful.  In the spring real estate season, buyers come out in droves and they are locked and loaded and ready to make offers and high offers.  Sellers prep their homes and plan on selling quickly and handling swift negotiations with the help of their agents.  Comps are strong, offers are high, inventory is low, and sales abound.  Come summer, the real estate market makes a shift — buyers are fewer, inventory can more easily level out, and the spring comps don’t seem to be able to hold their weight as much in this kind of market.  While a strong spring comp can be helpful, it isn’t a predictor for a good August or even October sale.

Comps aside, your house is still on the market–and has been–for sixty days.  Now what?

The next best step is to meet with Kelly to talk strategy.  What does that look like for you?  Kelly can help you look back at the past sixty days to see where you have been–to look at the inventory and neighborhood/area around you, to help put words to some of the seasonal change in your area, to assess what may need to happen under the roof of your home (think:  fresh coat of paint here, new countertops there, new carpet here), and to offer advice and input from buyers who have been through your home.

While you may have comps to back up your list price or your offer for a home, the truth is that the market itself–based simply on supply and demand–does not lie.  When you are in a situation where you are not getting the offers that you think you should be getting, you need to listen to the market, heed the guidance of Kelly, and take into consideration what potential buyers are telling you as feedback.  If you go without offers, it’s not because your agent isn’t telling you the right thing, it’s because the market is telling you something.  Reach out to us and let us help come alongside of you as you listen to what the market is saying to you.

Have questions about buying or selling in Richmond this summer or fall?  Let us know!  We are always ready and willing to chat!




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