Price it right - or else

Posted by Greg Eckler on Tuesday, August 30th, 2016 at 7:00am.

What happens when you don’t sell the first week?

There are many different philosophies on how to price a home but the result of not getting a contract in the first week is clear: a lower sales price and missed opportunity.

To see what happens to offer prices during and after the first week on the market, I graphed data for both detached and attached homes in multiple price ranges in the city of Denver.

• Under contract in the first week? Homes averaged 2.3% over the list price.

• Under contract in the second week? The sale price dropped 0.24% below asking price.

• Under contract in week 3 and later? See the graph below.

The 2.5% swing from week 1 to week 2 means $10,000-$12,000 less for the seller (based on the average home in Denver.)

Predicting the past is easy. But can you predict the future, too?

How do you ensure a first week sale? Price it right.

How do you know if the home is priced right? You wait for the market to tell you.

We usually know pretty quickly, based on the number of showings and agent correspondence, if we priced it right. If nothing happens that first week, we have to take a hard look at our logic and re-evaluate.

Being a former programmer, I can get pretty nerdy on housing data, projections, adjustments, and estimated listing prices. But when the equation is finalized and the super computer [aka my brain] outputs a price, I’m just predicting the past.

And that’s the kicker: after 13 years as Realtor, sometimes the market acts counter to what the historical data tells me it should – both good and bad. So in the end do your best to price it right, but just know it’s not a perfect process because we’re predicting the past … not the future.

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