Once you have decided to sell, it's crucial to market your property at the right price from the start. Unfortunately, many sellers often advertise their properties at higher prices, creating problems a few months down the line when they fail to sell.
Online property portals are full of listings with Price Reduced tags. This may make property owners who are thinking about selling in the near future hesitate to list their properties. But, on the other hand, buyers looking for bargains may get the wrong message.
Price Reduced tags don’t always mean what people might think they do.
People assume that if a property’s price is reduced, the sellers are desperate. This may sometimes be true, but it’s not always the case. Buyers and sellers need to understand all the possible factors that influence price reductions.
For sellers, it’s always preferable to list at the ideal price from day one. However, it may be tricky balancing expectations with fluctuating market conditions.
The number of days properties are on the market before selling varies from one month to the next. The same applies to the actual sale prices, which can vary from 5% to 20% below listing prices.
An experienced agent that has access to comprehensive current and historical data, and a thorough knowledge of your specific neighbourhood, should still be able to accurately price your home for sale, despite these changes.
However, these recommendations don’t always coincide with seller expectations, and negotiations can lead to properties being overpriced when they are first listed for sale.
Ideally, sellers should insist on evident and detailed reasoning for the price recommendations agents provide. In addition, agents should include details on other similar homes for sale in the area, a suggested positioning strategy - high, competitive or aggressive for a quick sale - and activity projections for weekly viewings as well as expected time on the market.
Sellers need to be quite clear on what they can expect from the sales process and where their property fits into the market," says van der Merwe. “Agents should also regularly update this information so that sellers can make informed decisions if their listings aren’t performing as expected.
If marketing efforts don’t follow the expected path, all is not lost. Instead, you can recover by simply assessing why a listing is underperforming and adjusting its position by the correct amount.
This process is more effective when agents are backed by support staff who are actively monitoring in-person and online activity. For example, if online viewings are high but aren't converting into enquiries, it usually indicates that the price is too high.
Changing to a competitive price doesn't mean you've failed or your home is unwanted. Instead, it's a sign that you understand the market and are serious about a sale.