When you’re ready to sell your home, isn’t a fast sale the goal?  I would answer, “YES!,” but if the behavior of most sellers is any indication a slow, grueling sale is really the goal. 

There are many factors that go into the timely sale of a home; price, condition and marketing to name a few.  I want to focus on price here so let’s assume that the home is in great condition and is being marketed by a professional who covers all the bases.  Will an Over-Priced home sell fast?  NO!  Will a Well-Priced home sell fast?  YES!

It seems obvious that a Well-Priced home will sell faster than an Over-Priced home.  So why do so many sellers “test the market” with an inflated listing price?  I think the answer is that most seller think Well-Priced is synonymous with Under-Priced

The current Greater Lansing real estate market is leaving sellers who are testing the market in the dust.  In Lansing alone there are 645 listings priced between $100,000 and $200,000.  With only about 45-50 homes currently selling each month in that price range we have a 14 month inventory of homes.  With odds like that only Well-Priced homes are getting attention from serious buyers. 

I took a listing last September from sellers who were not in a hurry to sell.  They didn’t need to sell until the following summer.  For five months the sellers tested the market with an inflated listing price and the results were predictable – few showings and no offers.  Last month they got serious about selling and agreed to a price reduction that put the property at a fair price, it became a Well-Priced property.  Within ten days there were three interested buyers and a strong offer.  That sale will be closing tomorrow.

Now, wouldn’t it have been easier to list at a fair price in the first place?  These sellers would have achieved the same results, but they would have only had to go through the stress and work of having their home on the market for 10 days instead of 6 months.  And yes, having a home on the market is hard work.  Keeping your house in presentable condition can be a major pain.

I understand the desire to overprice a home.  I know that nobody wants to feel like they’re giving money away.  I just want to caution potential sellers that in our current real estate climate overpricing will probably cost you money in the end and it will definitely cost you time.  Be careful!