Confused by the conflicting headlines about whether our market is slowing down or heating up? I’m seeing both – a seasonal slowdown in certain areas/price points and continuing critical inventory shortage/multiple offers in others. August vs July statistics show a small reduction in the median price of homes on the Eastside, but inventory also decreased slightly. The percentage of homes selling above list price dropped from 73% to 68%. What does all this mean? Not much, since it’s impossible to tell if that small decrease was due to more sellers pricing their homes too high or an actual shift in the market. As I’ve mentioned before, August is when we typically see a temporary decline as many people take a last summer vacation and attention turns to preparing for the new school year.
What remains important is for buyers to make their offer as compelling as possible. How do you do that? It typically comes down to price and terms. Being able to pay more than the seller is asking is usually of primary importance, but there are other factors that can help tip the scale. Offering to pay a lot for a property isn’t the same as actually being able to do it, so crafting an offer that reassures the seller that the buyer can perform is critical. The offer could be a hundred thousand higher than the next best offer but if the buyer is making it dependent on conducting an inspection, selling their home, or getting a loan, there is little guarantee (for the seller) that the transaction will close. I have over 16 years of experience in structuring a winning offer that helps my buyers mitigate their risks but still prevail.
For sellers, the three Ps still apply – Preparation, Presentation, and Pricing. Homes that look ill-maintained do not sell quickly unless they are “fire sale” priced. It doesn’t usually take that much to get a home looking its best and I have trusted vendors for everything from landscaping to plumbing to painting. If cost is an issue, Windermere has a program that can provide the funds for qualified sellers. It’s worth the effort and expense of getting your home looking market-ready in order to get the best return. Presentation is also key – staging where possible and top-notch photography are critical. I work with the best in the business and I also have a dedicated graphics professional to promote your home on social media. Finally, there is pricing. This is another area where experience makes a difference. Even in this seller’s market, if a home is priced too high it will sit. Buyers often build in an escalation factor on top of the list price so if a seller prices at the top of the value range, buyers may assume the home will escalate higher and not bother to make an offer. I will work with you to find that sweet spot that will result in the best possible outcome.
What questions do you have about the market? I’d love to hear from you!
BY THE NUMBERS
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