Jan 15

Priced NOT to Sell?

Realtor Brenda Mullen wrote a fabulous blog post Priced to Sell!!….Aren’t They All? In a witty, lighthearted yet insightful way, Brenda asks a very good question …. aren’t all homes on the market priced to sell? What’s the alternative “priced NOT to sell”?  I think Brenda’s intent was to poke a little fun at the silly things Realtors sometimes say in their advertising. And if you think about it, the all too common phrase “priced to sell” IS pretty silly. If a house is not priced to sell – house for sale, there’s a problem.

This post and the many great comments it received got me thinking about sellers who are not realistic about their asking price. You may think a home stager like myself shouldn’t be concerned with such matters. After all, I should only care about lamp shades, pillows and paint chips, right? Wrong! This central Connecticut stager is VERY concerned about list price. You see I don’t just make houses look pretty, I prepare houses to SELL. It doesn’t matter how great it looks when I’m done with it – if a house isn’t priced right it is not going to sell – and I won’t feel like I’ve accomplished my objective.

This is why I always urge my staging clients to LISTEN to their listing agent when it comes to determining a list price!

If a seller is not willing to be realistic about price, there’s a good chance that seller is simply not emotionally Ready2Sell….yet. Sometimes all they need is a little time and patience getting there. Sellers who are not emotionally ready to sell, have a funny way of getting in the way of their own home sale success. They might overprice their home, refuse to properly prepare it for sale and maybe even make it difficult to show (go here to learn other signs of Seller Sabotage Syndrome).   And if an offer does come, something inevitably goes wrong during the negotiations. 

There’s an unexpected upside to working with a stager that you might not be aware of. During the weeks (or sometimes months) it takes to get a home ready to sell, home sellers start removing the items that keep them emotionally connected to their home. They start packing and getting ready to move on to their next home. They study their competition. They start looking at their house differently – through the eyes of their potential buyers. The stress, the fear, the overwhelm starts to evaporate because they feel supported through the process. 

Sellers who take the time they need to go through this process (and it cannot be rushed) experience the most success. Why? Because they’ve done what it takes to become emotionally ready to list their house and with that usually comes a willingness to listen to their agents about price. If they’re unwilling to go through this process, that could be a sign they’re not that serious about selling. 

Of course sellers MUST realize they’re NOT going to get more for their house than its worth because they went through all that trouble! Staged homes sell faster because they have broad appeal. Properly preparing a home for sale can help sellers avoid price reductions but it does NOT justify an unrealistic asking price. 

Karen Bernetti is a Real Estate Stager, owner of Staging4Smooth Transitions, former Realtor and co-creator of the Ready2Sellin30Days System. Call 860-302-0333 to learn more.

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