The Magic Number in Selling Your Home

What is your property worth? How much do you want for it? Those are two very different things. Even in the strong market in and around Destin Florida, sellers often overprice their homes, condos and lots when selling.  They do this for various reasons, for the same reasons that occur in every market.  Here is a laundry list of reasons for overpricing:

  1. The seller “needs” a certain amount of money to pay off other things, such as personal loans, cars, mortgages on other real property, or to buy a new home valued at “x”.
  2. The seller feels the property is worth what they originally paid plus the actual cost of any improvements they made plus holding period profit, plus any capital gains they must pay (if it’s an investment property or they’ve held it for a short period of time).
  3. The seller has a “magic” number.  For example, “We need to sell for $500,000, or $200,000, or $2,000,000, etc.”. There is a dream number where they can do all the things they wish financially and have leftover. It has no basis in reality. It cannot be a variation of their magic number, for example, “$190,000″ or $487,000”.
  4. The seller feels his property is worth what the neighbor’s sold for or more, because his is better.

The value of a property is not what we “need”, what we “wish”, how much we “need to pay for other things”, what our “right return is”, or a “magic number”. Those are common lines of reasoning for overpricing a property. The market tells us what it’s worth. If the market feels a property is overpriced, there will be no offers, or offers will be far lower than list price. Historically, the closer a property is priced to where it should sell, the more it will sell for, the closer to the original list price and in a shorter period of time.

What is the definition of market value?  According to Fannie Mae, “market value is the most probable price that a property should bring in a competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller, each acting prudently, knowledgeably and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus”. How can you get true market value? First, start with a market analysis by your trusted real estate agent. Do not rely on often erroneous automatic valuation systems, such as Zillow and Trulia, whose sites cannot fine tune differences between comparable properties. Then, once on the market, realize that the market itself will be giving you feedback.  Here are the clues that you are overpriced – no one is looking at your property, or many are looking but you get no offers, or you get very low offers. Remember pricing a house, condo or lot is an art, not a science. If you are getting clues from the market that your list price is too high, lower it.


It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: [email protected]

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

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