We seldom see increases in list price. Let alone that home selling at 17% over the original listed price. So you ask, “How is this possible?” Let’s start by admitting you’re lazy.
You love it when life is easy. But how much do you truly love, “The easy life”? This my friend is one example of where we can measure how much people love being lazy.
This story was worth $16,500 to our client
Sasha had been listed with a high volume agent. These guys sell lots of homes which in turn makes clients feel like they are in the right hands. They can afford to do high volume as their system to list homes is lightweight and highly streamlined.
Generally folks are happy with this level of service. After all if it sells the home, who cares? The agents are in and out in a flash. They get some photos, put up their sign, and next thing you know you have a bonafide listing ready for hungry buyers. And admittedly Sasha’s agent did a pretty good job in my eyes. I think the home could have easily sold.
So you might ask, what is the catch? Why didn’t it sell?
The streamlined process, or the three P(s) as we agents call it, put up a sign, put it in the MLS, & pray, lends to average market results. The only tool at your disposal to sell quick is lower the price when in fact there are many more tools in your tool bag. Your agent only has to tell you which tool is best for the current market.
If your home needs a little more attention or fixes as I eluded to you may be in the dark. After All the name of the game in Real Estate is to get as many listings as you can, plug them into the MLS and then move onto the next one… Or is it?
What if the MLS doesn’t sell your home? What do you do then? What if the market / MLS isn’t meeting your goals, say paying off the loan on your home?
Sasha’s home needed to sell now but for more money then it was currently listed at. Seemed like an impossible task, especially after the market had told her no for 85 days straight. She parted ways with her agent as has happened to all of us with one client or another over the years.
The exact reasons are not of importance what happened after is.
Our shot at selling the home
We got a call from Sasha. She was searching for a new agent to list her home. I was a little sceptical as it did seem like we’d be asking a lot of the market. We’d need to relist the home for more money and sell it very quickly. Very much against what we ever advise anybody do.
While we may not have a magic wand, we do have some pretty good advice that typically pays off for our clients. That advice is not always mine, I reach out to a combined 100+ years of real estate experience from our managers to the contractors and vendors we work with. Then we create a plan specific to each client to sell their home. Of course, there’s one last person we employ should the home not sell immediately and that’s the market, but interestingly the market completely agreed with us (I’ll tell you more later).
The plan for Sasha was to paint her home, deep clean the inside, and clean up the landscaping. Seems pretty obvious but interestly had not been prescribed for the previous listing.
After these activities were complete Heather and I got to work. We invested our best effort in the decorating the home, taking photos, and preparing for our first offer. We spent a combined 18 hours the first day and I an additional 3 days preparing the marketing afterwhich we went live on the market.
What happened next shocked all of us
I was nervous as we had raised the list price from $125,000 to $139,500 a full $14,500 more than the previous listing. Experience has shown our efforts would pay off however, I couldn’t be sure they would pay off to the tune of an additional 12%.
The moment we hit the market the phone started ringing. It was hard to keep up with the offers as they rolled in, one after the other. As awesome as that sounds, it wasn’t all fun and games. We as agents learned some difficult lessons.
Four of the ten offers went to contract, only to backout the next day. These buyers had rolled the dice figuring our pictures told the entire story on the home. Their contracts tied up the home during which they could have a day without bidding against others to consider the home.
Heather and I had to start ensuring every offer was preceded by an in person preview and full review of seller disclosures. It’s common sense, you’d think every buyer would do this but buyers were especially anxious as we were well marketed in a price point that had sold out.
Our fourth contract was the lucky one! The buyer and agent were amazing. Everything worked out well for everybody. Our seller walked away with a little money in her pocket. The buyer got the home for less than other buyers who offered. And myself as an agent learned a few new lessons to share with you.
Should you relist at higher price?
My answer is no. Invest up front in your listing. Place it on the market and price it right the first time. This experience cost our client nearly six months of mortgage payments. Yes timing counts and the market market conditions favored us more than the previous agent. However, effort up front pays off regardless of market conditions.
Also in bidding wars. Sellers should immediately reply with a time frame to review all bids, instead of individually replying to each offer (*duh* as I hit my head). And buyers consider something called the escalation clause, to avoid over bidding. You can ask me more about when we have our first meeting.
It does not matter if you are a buyer, a seller, or a lowly college student subsiding on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (as I once was). The world rewards effort. That is because we are all lazy and those who demand laziness pay a premium for it. In our case the market rewarded us with an extra $16,500 big ones.
Which goes to show a little effort can help you cash in on the easy life. You just have to know where to invest your effort and that’s something I can help you with at least with your next real estate transaction. I’m not sure about your college studies. So drop me a line and ask your questions. Let’s get this conversation started.