Making sense of the state of the market in Manhattan has proven to be a daily challenge. Talk of Wall Street layoffs and meager bonuses, the current credit crunch, and Fed attempts to buoy the economy are just some of the topics to consider when trying to determine our state of the market. So what is the current state of the market? A undercurrent of anxiety pervades buyers, sellers and real estate agents as we all await Wall Street bonus numbers and any indication of a shift in inventory. Transactions continue to take place with regularity as long as property is priced appropriately, which brings me to the topic of this post.
One thing I’m noticing as I peruse the listings database is that almost all of the property that is coming on the market at ridiculously high prices is being handled by agents with fewer than two years experience in the real estate industry. As I have written recently, realistic pricing is perhaps the most important factor in determining whether or not your apartment will sell in any market much less one so full of uncertainty. So my frustration mounts as sellers with unrealistic expectations continue to find agents to represent their over priced property.
It’s no surprise to me that their are a plethora of real estate agents who will take an exclusive right to sell a property at any price. Particularly suspect are the newer agents who so desperately need business that they will accept the overpriced property just to have something on their web page and a means to generate buyer leads for other properties. What does surprise me here is that sellers would ignore concrete comparable sales data and select an agent who tells them whatever it is they want to hear regarding price. It happens all the time but I guess I thought that most sellers could see through this type of sales tactic. Remember the story of the agent who secretly laughed at the seller who fell for her overpricing technique?
So how many sellers have to learn the hard way that the overpricing of their property is often an act of desperation by a novice or even unethical agent to procure buyers and exposure for the agent at the expense of the seller’s property sitting on the market? Seller beware.
For some tips on pricing your home check out The Art of Pricing Property.
And remember sellers, make your agent come up with an asking price before suggesting to them what you think it’s worth. Don’t do their job for them…make them prove their expertise and pay close attention to how they generated the suggested list price.