Asking price can be a game changer in real estate

When sellers list their homes on the market for sale, they usually have financial goals in mind. For instance, a particular seller might need to make a certain amount of profit on a home sale in order to afford the new home that he or she is buying. As a listing agent, your primary goal is to protect your client's interests. A top priority toward this goal is to get offers from prospective buyers. Determining an asking price that's a good fit for a specific home will put your clients a step ahead.

When a house sits on the market and no offers are coming in or showings are being scheduled, one of the first issues to consider is whether the list price is too high. It's better if you can work with your clients at the start and help them determine the right asking price.

Discuss location in relation to a list price

If your client's home for sale is in a prime location, the list price would logically be higher than someone trying to sell a home in a neighborhood with a high crime rate, for instance. To help your client choose an asking price that's a good fit, discuss regional amenities, such as whether there is quick access to public transportation or top-rated schools in the area.

Other location issues that can have an impact on competitive pricing include how much traffic is in the immediate vicinity as well as what the comparable sales of other homes in the area have been within a half mile to a mile radius.

Is the house in good condition?

As a listing agent, you might be asked to sell a house that has a leaky roof or outdated flooring and cabinetry. Maybe there are cracks in the driveway or walkways, or windows that do not have good seals. If your client wants to ask for a certain price for his or her home, that price must reflect the condition of the home.

If a home is in pristine condition, your clients might be able to up their asking price by $10,000 or more. A house that is in disrepair or is outdated might sell faster with a lower list price.

Why you should try to avoid lowering a listed price

Many sellers make the mistake of listing the initial asking price too high then advertising a drop in price when there are no offers or showings coming in. This can backfire big time. Rather than looking at a lowered price as one might look at a sale in a department store, buyers are likely to see the price drop and wonder what is wrong with the house that caused it not to sell for the initially listed price.

As you gain experience as a listing agent in the South Carolina real estate industry, you'll learn what works and what doesn't regarding asking prices. If you make some mistakes along the way, take note of them. They are learning opportunities. Learning how to set the right price when a house goes on the market is a key to becoming a profitable sales agent.

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