Sunday, August 14, 2011

Seller Frustration

So everyone knows how crappy the real estate market is in this country. The media loves doom and gloom, and there is at least one news piece daily that reminds me of this. And despite recent glimmers of hope, it remains in the doldrums, and most experts agree that it will stay that way for some time. It has been discussed ad nauseam, tight banks, nervous buyers, high taxes and gas prices, whatever is the driving force that is keeping things tight, it would appear that it will remain this way for some time. I believe like most things in life, it is a self-fulfilling prophecy, and the more it is discussed and dissected and moaned about, the more it will stay the same.

Since I represent both buyers and sellers, I am seeing it from both sides. Right now I have a handful of listings that are not selling, and despite my best efforts, are continuing to languish. Now this is not an aberration. Less than one in four homes listed on the Sullivan County MLS will sell. That is the cold hard facts of this market. If you list your home today, there is an 80% chance it won’t sell in the next calendar year. Now these stats include the unmotivated, test-the-waters sellers, which although much less than at the peak of the market, still litter our MLS, but it is a sobering fact to bring up during a listing presentation.

So what does this mean to sellers? Your home must not just be a good deal, it has to be head and shoulders above the others. It must have a wow factor that sets it aside from the twenty other homes that a prospective buyer can pick to look at. And even then, this does not guarantee a sale. Every week I call my sellers, and we have discussions of what we can do differently. How can we make this house stand out from the others? For many we are at or close to the bottom for price, a few we have dropped into the short sale category, and all feel frustrated. Their lives are on hold as we search for a buyer. I feel for them, and it is often frustrating to see little to no response on some of these homes that a few years ago would have been snatched up quickly.

At any rate, there is still buying and selling going on. People are still moving, switching jobs, needing more room for growing families, and buying second home getaways. It is the process of how they are doing that which has changed. And who can blame buyers? The landscape is completley different than a few years ago. Buyers can wait, and nibble, and choose carefully. There is very little competition, and multiple offers are a thing of the past. Yes it is a buyers market, no doubt about it.

There were seven single family homes reported sold in the Sullivan County MLS for this week. Click Here

My pick of the week is along the same vein as homes that don't sell. It is an almost 2,000 square foot redone ranch in Narrowsburg. This is a nice home, and although it is on a small lot, it has appeal to both a second and primary home buyer. It just recently expired off the MLS after a year. Original price was $199,000 and they dropped it to $179,000. This is just another example of how just being a good home, priced competitively, isn't necessarily enough to get your home sold. Click Here

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