As most of us know, the days of a homeowner receiving multiple offers on the first day of their listing generally are all but gone in many markets.
Buyers are now seeing homes that clean, freshly painted and staged, price reductions every few weeks and just like the builders were doing in 2007, many motivated sellers are throwing in 55" plasma TVs. In some cases we've actually seen sellers following buyers around in their home trying to negotiate price and features as they are walking through the home for the first time.
What does this mean for current and future home sellers? It means more than ever that home sellers working with a Realtor that has an aggressive marketing process in place. I say process because many Realtors and real estate agents are committed to a Level 1 advertising plan to get the home out in the mainstream and hopefully get it sold.
What is a Level 1 Advertising Plan?
•· Put a sign in the front yard
•· Put fliers in the box and a few in the home
•· Put the home on the MLS, which also uploads to a few dozen or so websites
•· Hold a few open houses
•· And hope and pray someone buys the home before asking the seller for a price reduction
That might have worked when the some of the markets were hot a few years ago but that isn't working today. Why are so many agents still only doing Level 1 advertising when it's more of a hit or miss situation?
The answer is because some agents accept listings that are way over priced and won't appraise or sell anywhere close to the listing price and the agents have allowed the sellers to beat them down on the commissions, many times a percent or more.
Our job to show the seller why agent XYZ that just left as you were arriving was willing to accept a lower commission rate and why he/she thought that "testing the waters" with a higher than market price on the first 14 to 21 days was a great idea. Sellers not only want their home sold but also wants to see the value in the commission rate being charged and while we want to get the listing we also want to be straight with the seller and let them know what negative effect "Testing the Waters" could actually have in the end. The agent that accepts that 4.5% commission usually isn't planning on effectively marketing the property, instead they will advertise the property. The sellers need to know what the difference is between the two and if they don't see the value in your marketing and they insist on a higher than realistic price then get your expired listing adverisements ready to send to that address in a few months.