As Buyers’ Agents, we regularly receive emails about properties for sale both from private sellers as well as from selling agents.
Over 6 months ago, we received such an email from an out-of-town agent about a house for sale in the Northern Districts of Sydney.
According to the agent: “The feedback and comparisons indicate 1.3 to 1.5 million and offers need to be starting over the 1.1 million.”
To begin with, it is not a great strategy to seek offers over 1.1 million when comparisons are supposedly as high as 1.5 million.
This aside, the main issue I had was actually not in the selling agent’s flawed approach. Rather it is in the inaccurate pricing of the property.
Although we did not have a buyer matching this particular property, as a courtesy, I did write back immediately to the selling agent. Below is an extract:
“Just as feedback for your vendors, I think the property is quite over-priced (being on a busier road and of only weatherboard construction as well). Properties which fetch the higher prices in the nearby areas are often full brick, or brick veneer at the very least.”
Although I had not inspected this particular property, it was very obvious to me that the vendor had a hugely inflated sense of expectation.
Incidentally, this property is currently still on the market as I write this blog. It is no longer listed with the out-of-town agent who initially contacted me, and the price expectation has dropped by over $200,000. Despite this drop in price, unfortunately I still think it is still over-priced and I doubt that it will sell at the current asking price.
Here are 3 tips to anyone who is looking to sell their property:
- Make sure that it is realistically priced. A property that lingers on the market for over 6 months is considered stale and leads potential buyers to think that something might be wrong with it (other than just the price tag).
- Always use a local selling agent who knows the area well and can show evidence of prior sales and knowledge of prices of comparable properties.
- A good Buyers’ Agent will be able to give you an honest opinion on your home. As we do not list or sell properties, we are not biased in any way to ‘pitch’ a high price to you (which is what some selling agents do to win your business). We also regularly recommend good selling agents to people who may be unsure of which selling agent to appoint (we do not take any payment or commission for doing this). Selling agents also regularly call us to get a second opinion on pricing. Essentially, we are their sanity check. So, if you are looking to sell your property, it is definitely worthwhile to contact us. We just might be able to give you some free advice!
About Oliver Stier
Oliver J. Stier is the Director of OH Property Group, a leading Sydney buyers agency. He studied Quantitative Economics and Finance at Cambridge University (UK), University of Toronto (Canada) and Princeton University (USA). In addition to being a licensed real estate agent, Oliver also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.