Are You Trying to Sell Your Property or Just List it?

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Services for Real Estate Pros with Real estate commentator; GoToby.com, Take Action Propertiesi

It's said that sellers are the last ones to know the market has dropped. By most measures, the Palm Coast, Flagler County housing market peaked in the summer of 2005. Yet, 2 ½ years later, some sellers still haven't gotten the message. How can that be? It's certainly not because of the lack of media coverage.  

People fall in love with their assets. They just can't believe that there isn't at least one person out there that values their property as much as they do. But after 2 ½ years, shouldn't they be waking up to reality?   Here are a few things that sellers need to know:  

  • Buyers don't care what you paid for your property.
  • Buyers don't care how much you think you need to break even.
  • Buyers don't care that your listing price is lower than the listing price of comparable properties. They care about how your listing price compares to the price at which comparable properties SOLD recently.
  • Buyers have lots of options. Your property is only one of several.
  • In a buyers market, buyers are not as anxious to make a deal as are sellers.
  • Carrying costs can eat you alive. If you're monthly carrying cost (interest, maintenance, insurance, association fees, etc.) is $2,500, your investment will be $15,000 higher in six months. Do you think you will get $15,000 more if you wait six months?
  • Think about how you would describe your property to the Property Appraiser's office in order to justify a lowered assessment. These are the reasons a buyer will offer less than you want.
  • Taking a loss on an investment does not make you a bad person. Even smart people make mistakes. Last year, multi-billionaire Carl Icahn offered $22 per share for WCI Communities, the developer of condos at Hammock Dunes. Today WCI trades for $1.81. But Carl got lucky. The company turned down his offer as too low.

  Here are just a few examples of current local listings that I do not believe are justified by present market conditions:

  • Two North Riverwalk Drive Intracoastal lots in Palm Coast Plantation are listed at $379K and $375K respectively although two nearby lots recently sold for $225K and $215K.
  • Three adjacent Intracoastal lots on South Riverwalk are listed at $419K, $349K, and $480K. A fourth lot is listed at $299.9K and a nearby lot sold recently for $300K.
  • The median selling price of 52 Palm Coast lots (those platted by ITT when Palm Coast was first planned) sold since the first of the year was $30,000. The median listing price of the 1,202 lots still available is $59,045. Hello!!!
  • Of 39 lots listed in Ginn's Conservatory, 12 are above $300K. However, no lots have sold in that community in the past two years and there are 20 listed below $200K of which 2 are below $100K.
  • Two salt-water canal lots in the "C" section are listed above $450K although no similar lots have sold above $287K in the last six months.
  • An Intracoastal unit in Canopy Walk lists for $499K while an identical unit in the next building sold recently for $299K.

The list could go on for pages but I think you see my point. If you are serious about selling, discuss current sales of comparable properties with your Realtor® and adjust your listing price accordingly. Repeat the process at least every other week. If you are unwilling to do this, you are not seriously trying to sell your property. You are simply listing it. Your neighbors would rather you took down your sign. The properties that sell (and many more are selling today) are the ones that are competitively priced and/or attractively presented.

Toby Tobin is a real estate commentator and Publisher of GoToby.com, the popular real estate news, information, and analysis website for the City of Palm Coast, Flagler County and Northeast Florida. He is a licensed Florida Realtor® associated with Adams Cameron & Co.

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