The Seller Controls the Price

Real Estate Agent with Baird & Warner Real Estate

I walked into a very dated older home in Winnetka recently during brokers' tour.  Afterwards, I The Seller Controls the Pricepeered at the listing sheet and must have snorted because the listing agent then said:  "It's not me, the seller always says what the price will be."  


Well, yes and no.  

Yes because it's your house, your investment, your decision.  No because some agents will agree with you. Not because you're right on the price, but because . . . maybe they want the listing, maybe they hope to get you to reduce the price in a month, maybe they're just wrong.

As a listing agent, my first job is to interpret the comparables and discuss those with you. The comps are the number one resource we have - and if we're good agents, we've seen all those homes as well.  While no two houses in the North Shore are the same, they can still be compared because we'll make adjustments up or down.

No amount of flashy marketing or online video tours can camouflage an overpriced listing.  I can sit down with you and show you how sellers who insisted on a higher price have gotten less than they would have if they priced right to start with.

How do you avoid that?  First, talk with several agents, be open to all ideas, suggestions, and price points.  Most agents, like me, will give you a reasonable price range, such as between $950,000 and $1,025,000.  I will give you scenarios of choosing the higher end over the lower end.  Yes, it's a seller's market, but tread carefully

It can be the hardest decision a homeseller makes.  Pricing your home close to where it should sell is the best strategy for you to net more on your house.  Don't worry about:

"wiggle room",

"giving it away," or

"low ball offers."  

They can all be dealt with - price it right when you first list and good things will happen.  Like more money, shorter days on market, easier and faster move, and peace of mind.

Posted by

Margaret Goss - Winnetka and North Shore Real Estate Broker
Specializing in homes for sale in Winnetka, Wilmette, Kenilworth, Northfield, Glencoe, Glenview, Northbrook, and Evanston.

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John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Good advice Margaret!  Using comps and determining a realistic value from the start can save a ton of time on market.  Have a great weekend!

Jan 17, 2014 09:10 AM #1
Fred Cope
Reliant Realty in Nashville, TN - Nashville, TN
Looking For Homes With A Smile

Hello Margaret. If we price it right, we get more traffic; and more traffic increases chances the right prospect walk thru the door.  Price it too high, and they wave bye.  If only sellers could understand that we REALTORS® want property to bring max value when we list--commission is enough motivation.  We also know our sellers lose when the property does not attract prospects.  Everyone wants a bargain, most will consider negotiating IF price is close and the are drawn to the home, but no one wants to get taken.  I appreciate the informative and articulate post. Thank you

Jan 27, 2014 04:03 AM #2
Fred Cunningham
Margaret, Your article was refreshing! Some local brokers ask me why I did not take some listings. I tell them if the seller is stuck on over pricing there is no point in my company getting the reputation of over pricing. Word spreads quickly when people waste their time looking at properties where they cannot negotiate a fair market price. I find waiting until the second realtor sign goes down on these is a good opportunity to get my sign up. :)
Feb 05, 2014 02:11 AM #3
Mimi Foster
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

Excellent post. And we need to learn how to walk away from a listing if the Seller will not be reasonable in their price.

Jul 17, 2014 08:34 AM #4
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Margaret Goss

Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate
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