If you’re a seller in today’s market, you get bombarded with information about the national housing market, the Charlotte market, and even neighborhood realtors handing out information. How do you know who’s information to believe?
We’d start by putting forth its first and foremost all about what is happening on your street, in your neighborhood. There are parts of the country in recovery, and there are parts of Charlotte in recovery, to know how to make the right decisions relative to your home, you need expert advise on your specific area.
Next, I’d mix in trend and inventory analysis not just in your community, but your specific range of home. Its entirely possible for there to be a lot of activity in the 500 to 750k range, while its a little more quiet in others. You also need to understand how available inventory relates to that high or lower level of activity. If you are in a low inventory/high activity price range right now, you’re likely to be able to get more for your house than you might have as recently as January. For example, the range in the 500-750 segment in the more popular areas of Lake Norman is really cooking. There were almost 50 contracts placed in that range the past 6 weeks, and in areas where there is lower inventory, you’re starting to see the conditions for higher prices. Our office has seen several multiple bid situations in that range recently in high demand areas. Its important to note that it can be different within specific neighborhoods, so its important to have a realtor who monitors that trend at the street level.
We still hear of realtors telling people how poor the conditions are and that they should price low. Yes, we’re still well off from 2008, but there are areas where prices are ticking back up off of last year and the year before’s market lows. If you’re priced at market low in one of the hotter ranges, be careful not to leave money on the table. If you’re listing right now, you should look for a realtor who can tell you not only what’s going on in terms of sold comps, but showing activity and what ranges are starting to see multiple bids. We had two scenarios this winter where we felt homes were price already aggressively enough, we told the owners not to reduce further, and in one case we got 55,000 dollars more than another realtor got for their clients 3 doors down with same size and features. That realtor’s strategy is to tell people they need to be priced very aggressively. We thought the spring market was coming, that economic conditions would improve, and that inventory was at an 8 year low in their community and that despite the other house selling cheap, they should wait and see how the early spring went. Most brokers would have been thrilled with a reduction, but our philosophy on price is to look at where you are at any given point in time compared to comps, inventory, etc.. We don’t just push price decreases for the heck of it.