It's hard to go into a listing presentation and tell your potential clients that the price they believe they can get for their home is unrealistic in today's market. You get your clients to agree to a little lower price but they are still chasing the market, not ahead of the market. Before you know it your listing agreement is about to expire and you have not sold the home. Now What?
Setting realistic expectations up front will help you when you advise your clients to lower the price, paint the interior or exterior, and manicure the landscape or whatever else the home may need. In our area in today's market we use an 8-8 rule. The rule is very simple, if after 8 weeks or 8 showings (whichever comes first) if there have been no offers you will need to "Reposition the home".
If you set the expectations during the listing appointment it will make it much easier to use updated market statistics, including absorption rates and a CMA, to position the home ahead of the market. Also have all of the feedback from showings to get your sellers to make necessary improvements to get the home sold during the contract listing timeframe.
A quick note: The 8-8 rule may not apply when listings have absorption rates of 9 months or more. You may need to do some research in your area and modify the rule for your particular market.