Sellers - Don't Test the Market!

publication date: Jul 27, 2011
author/source: Kate Faulkner, Property Expert and Author of Which? Property Books

Sellers - Don't Test the Market!

To Sell Property

If you are keen to sell your home, it's easy to fall into the trap of trying to get the best possible price for your home. If people are typically ‘making offers' on properties, putting your home up for sale for £200,000 in the hope of getting offers from £170,000, might seem sensible and certainly this kind of ‘sales strategy' worked in previous years - so why wouldn't it work now?

The truth is that the housing market for buyers and sellers has changed dramatically since the credit crunch. Back in the heady days of house price increases, buyers were desperate to ‘get on the ladder' or ‘trade up' before properties became unaffordable to them.

Now with rumours of more house price falls, doom and gloom about the economy (the day a chocolate company like Thorntons decides to shed a third of its stores means we are definitely not out of recession!) buyers are jittery. The slightest thing will stop them from even viewing a property let alone making an offer.

For example, if you are a buyer and you have just spent the last few weeks viewing say, terraced homes all worth between £100,000 and £125,000 in your area, if one comes on the market at £135,000 the buyer knows it's over priced. They won't pay £10,000 to £35,000 more for your property than they could for another one, even if yours has got a conservatory or a nicer garden. They just don't have to and they'll assume you are not serious about selling, so they'll not even bother to view it.

Research I've previously carried out suggests overpriced properties will typically take eight months or more to sell and will eventually sell for LESS than the market value they could have originally received. This information came from research carried out BEFORE the credit crunch, so now it's likely to take over a year to sell and as prices don't look like they are performing as well as in 2010, it's likely that overpricing your property will lead to a waste of yours and everyone elses time.


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