If you're ever tempted to list your house at a price that's a little on the "high side", and "wait and see" what happens, just don't do it. The asking price when you list your home on the market affects the profit that you will receive when you sell, more specifically how much profit you will see, and how long it will sit on the market.Working with your listing agent you should find a price that the market will bear, and that won't leave any money on the table. "List High and Wait" isn't a mentality that is in your best interest in today's market.
Time is a key consideration when realizing a profit in the sale of your house. Statistically, the longer a house sits on the market, there's a less likely chance that it will sell for the asking price. If you put your house on the market and decide to "list high and wait", you will most likely increase the days on market, and in the long run will probably see a lower selling price. A house will see a bump in activity when it's first listed on the market. Buyers are waiting for new listings and will instantly request showings where they see a value: the most amount of features and benefits, for the least amount of money. The longer the days on market, the more buyers ask, "What's wrong with it?" and will either make a lowball offer, or, worse, not schedule a showing in the first place. The National Association of Realtors tells us that two weeks with no showings, or ten showings with no offers, that the market isn't willing to bear your price. The market doesn't matter what you "need" to get or what you "want" to get. It will only pay where it sees a value. If you list high from the get-go, you risk missing the "bump" of activity, forcing you to chase the market, that is, reduce the price to a place that will cause that same type of interest as when the house was originally listed so that showings are requested, and eventually, and offer received.
Don't confuse value versus cost as it relates to the sale of your home. Your house is only worth what buyers are willing to pay for it. In determining the pricing strategy of your home, don't pay too much emphasis on home improvements. Buyers may not share your tastes, and while you've enjoyed your kitchen upgrade with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, a buyer may not share the same preferences and may not see the value in those purchases when he will be doing a remodel in the near future.
Keep it simple when it comes to coordinating showings and negotiating offers. Time is of the essence, so it's in your best interest to be flexible and allow buyers to view your home when it's convenient. In addition, be flexible to the contingencies during the negotiation process with any offers. For instance, if a buyer is looking for immediate occupancy, do your best to accomodate.
Every seller wants the most amount of money, in the least amount of time, with as little hassle as possible. Your initial listing price will be the long term set up in a more timely, and more profitable, closing day.
Melissa Rolland is a licensed Connecticut realtor. She lives in Tolland, along with her husband Todd, a licensed broker. Together they manage the Rolland Realty Group at Keller Williams Realty. You can connect with them at www.RollandRealtyGroup.com