A Lingering For Sale Sign Has Negative Impact

Real Estate Agent with Platinum Properties TN Broker: 208698

A Lingering For Sale Sign Has Negative Impact


For sale signs Not all real estate markets are hot even as we approach the increased activity that comes in spring and summer. There is a philosophy that says list it and someone will buy it. Having lots of signs out will cause buyers to call, maybe. Buyers may just go and check out the property on their mobile device. When they see it is way overpriced they may not call you anyway.

There is a diminishing return on having a For Sale sign stay up months and months. Having a For Sale sign up too long could be damaging your reputation. The questions come, why hasn't it sold, what is wrong with the house, what's wrong with the agent? Do you know when to say no to a listing?

I have an opportunity to list a property. The seller bought it over ten years ago and says she has put several hundred thousand dollars in the property. It is not totally updated and the buyers in the market will not like that. There is physical and functional obsolescence. To make the situation more complex the seller wants $50,000 more than it is worth in a good market. We are in a challenging market.

The question is will having a sign in front of this home for 6 months help or hurt my business? When a home doesn't sell in a popular neighborhood the fingers point to the agent. The agent priced it too high and the agent isn't doing the job to get the property sold. The agent takes the brunt of the responsibility.

Onlookers may think the agent should know better and the agent must not be that good of an agent. Sure there could be talk that the seller is unreasonable, difficult to work with and wants too much money, but the bottom line is the agent's name is on the sign. If you were a seller watching the progress of the sale would you call the agent with the lingering For Sale Sign to sell your home?

Accepting a listing that is way overpriced and that will have a For Sale sign up for months and months is not good advertising. In my opinion it will have a negative impact on the agent. On the reverse side if the listing is priced right and the house is in excellent market condition and sells quickly, the real estate agent gets kudos and will most likely get other sellers in the neighborhood calling and remembering. It is good for business.

A lingering For Sale Sign has a negative impact. Be choosy and smart. That For Sale sign is being watched by other sellers. With that said, saying no may actually be a better plan for your business and your reputation not to mention your stress level.


A Lingering For Sale Sign Has Negative Impact


For selling tips to get top price for your Clarksville TN home click here. When you are ready to sell your home and want sound, quality advice and expertise, contact Debbie Reynolds at 931-320-6730. 


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 Centruy 21 Platinum Properties2130 Wilma Rudolph Blvd.

Clarksville, TN 37040

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Debbie Reynolds
"The Real Debbie Reynolds"

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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Praful Thakkar 04/30/2015 09:00 PM
  2. John G. Johnston 04/28/2015 11:15 PM
Real Estate Best Practices

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Richard V. Foster, Esq.
Nevada Perfect Homes - Henderson, NV
Broker (58356) - ABR/M, CREN, CRS, GRI, RRG, SFR

Signs can be a benefit or a negative. If you re trying to find buyers, posting a "SOLD" sign too soon will kill buyer leads. Posting too late or too early will kill seller leads too.

Apr 29, 2015 03:36 AM #75
Karen Schimpf
Commercial Capital Ltd. - Cedar Park, TX
When the Bank Says No, I CAN Get Your Deal CLOSED!

I agree with Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker. I am not a realtor but from the perspective of a buyer, if I saw a sign on a home that was on the market longer than the norm,  I would think the seller is the one who is wanting too much for their home not the realtor. An idea would be to tell the seller what the average time a home is on the market in your area.  Than have the client agree that if the home doesn't sell by the average time than the seller agrees to lower the price.  Win Win. If the seller isn't willing than at that point you tell the client you are not interested in taking on the listing.

Apr 29, 2015 04:09 AM #76
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

I have seen a few that lingered so long the grass grew up in around them I think the agent may have forgotten about them.

Apr 29, 2015 04:11 AM #77
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M

Debbie - I agree that a sign that is there for too long doesn't look good.

Apr 29, 2015 04:42 AM #78
Derrick Guevremont
Counselor Realty of Rochester - Rochester, MN
Rochester MN Homes for Sale

What if an agent who is well-known and respected throughout a market puts his name on a listing that is priced too high?  Does that make buyers think something positive about the home that they just don't see?  Is the seller right in thinking "This real estate agent is the one who can get me what I want for my house!" ?  Or did the agent take a bad listing from a seller who has unreal expectations and are on a slippery slope toward negative thoughts by buyers and their agents?

Apr 29, 2015 05:05 AM #79
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate

It really is true, you should be choosy on who to work with. Sometimes though, you're just baffled on why the house hasn't sold. I've got 2 such listings like that now.

Apr 29, 2015 05:18 AM #80
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

I agree with your points Debbie.  Sometimes even if the home is priced right, there is something 'wrong' that makes it linger on the market--floor plan, location, structural issues.  The agent gets blamed but not their fault!

Apr 29, 2015 05:35 AM #81
Greg Mona
eXp Realty - Chandler, AZ
Professional Real Estate Representation for YOU!

Debbie Reynolds Excellent post and points raised.  While sometimes a certain home simply takes more time to sell than others through no real fault of the listing agent, a good property will typically sell quickly.  One thing I'd like to mention is "back in the day" having a sign hanging was a great form of advertising, certainly better than it seems to be today.  I don't know about your part of the country, but I/we hardly ever get sign calls anymore.  I have closed sales with buyers who simply called my phone number on a listing sign, and I offered to assist them. The last time that happened was a year and a half ago.  Didn't mean to stray from the topic at hand but felt it was somewhat related.

Apr 29, 2015 07:12 AM #82
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

Good points here Debbie.  When I meet with a prospective seller I always come prepared with comparables to prove the value. If the seller feels their price should be alot higher, I let them know we can try their price for two weeks. After that, we list at my price.  That works for me.  I don't like my signs up too long.

Apr 29, 2015 11:44 AM #83
Mike McCann - Nebraska Farm Land Broker
Mike McCann - Broker, Mach1 Realty Farmland Broker-Auctioneer Serving Rural Nebraska - Kearney, NE
Farm Land For Sale 308-627-3700 or 800-241-3940

No No No Debbie Reynolds    If they want $50k more than market and it is obsolete....RUUUUNNNNNN!!!

Apr 29, 2015 12:39 PM #84
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

I agree. Most often when a home is on the market for months, the property, the agent and agency lose their credibility to future opportunities. There's always a compelling reason why a property won't sell and it's usually the asking price that prevents buyers from even considering the opportunity.

Most agents who employ the strategy of taking an over priced listing with the intent to reduce the price to the market IMO are tarnishing their image and effectiveness as a professional. The market recognizes those types of salespeople and companies and won't do business with them, I wouldn't, would you?

If a Realtor can't persuade a seller to price his property to the existing market and sell him, how is the seller going to perceive the listing Realtor? If the agent can't convince the seller to list at market price how can he convince future buyers to buy at list price?

Apr 30, 2015 11:27 PM #85
Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner
Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395 - Mission Viejo, CA
Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395

What a thoughtful blog post. You are so right to think about this. I have to start by saying that I'm impressed by your use of functional and physical obsolescence...haven't used those terms since my broker's test. LOL

I have a listing (no sign) which was over priced and it took a bit for the sellers to come down in price to a reasonable place. The sellers are great, but also have mentioned a few times that they have a "friend" who is a realtor that has told their circle of friends that "she could have sold it by now." Sure...so could I, at a marketable price. :) Fortunately, we close in a couple weeks. 

May 01, 2015 04:37 AM #86
Karen Feltman
Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group - Cedar Rapids, IA
Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

I say no....a lot.  I have high expectations for my sellers.  Especially if they want the highest price in the shortest amount of time.  If they start fighting me on the condition part of the listing, not wanting to clean, paint or declutter, they have lost my interest in putting my name on the sign.  I would rather be known for the best priced and sparkly houses that are clean inside and out.  I don't need my name on the sign for months on end.  

May 01, 2015 11:13 AM #87
Jim Paulson
Progressive Realty (Boise Idaho) www.Progressive-Realty.info - Boise, ID

I love it when a sign is up forever and I ultimately sell the listing.  At closing, I switch out the other agency's sign for mine and post SOLD on it.  It shows people that I get results.

May 02, 2015 02:05 AM #88
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

I have to agree with you Debbie, it's not like the market is lagging like it was a couple of years ago.

May 04, 2015 12:51 PM #89
Nina Rogoff
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Medfield, MA
Sells Real Estate!

I just had this conversation at a listing presentation today. The market value of the home came in $70K less than the homeowners were thinking. They asked if I would list it at their price. I said that my goal is not to have a For Sale sign just sitting in front of their house. My goal is to be successful for them. I told them that I had just showed them 3 extremely good comps that sold recently withing $5K of one another. Those 3 homes were actually in better condition and more updated that the homeowners' house. Why would they choose to set their house up to linger on the market. They got it.

May 05, 2015 01:28 PM #90
Sarah, John Rummage
Benchmark Realty LLC, Nashville TN 615.516.5233 - Nashville, TN
Love Being Realtors® in the Nashville TN Area!

I think it looks worse to have a series of signs from different broker companies. I think people lose track of time and don't realize how long one company's sign has been there, but if they see a new sign every couple of months, they think 'that house is always on the market.' 

Jun 24, 2015 10:18 AM #91
Winston Heverly
Winston Realty, Inc. - Atlantis, FL

Hi, what a great post, I'm glad I came across it during my search.

Aug 31, 2015 12:53 PM #92
Jill Murty, Realtor - Orange County, CA
Sunset Properties, Powered by Movoto - Laguna Niguel, CA

I have one listing that has lingered and I've thought a lot about taking the sign down.  Most of my listings are in escrow within a short period of time and I'd hate to be judged on this single one. 

Jan 08, 2016 01:58 AM #93
Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner
Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395 - Mission Viejo, CA
Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395

Couldn't agree more. I am always surprised when buyers call me to get the sign down from the listing agent. 

Jan 08, 2016 07:49 AM #94
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