OPPORTUNITIES FOR BUYERS
Even though we are headed into one of the strongest seller’s markets we’ve seen, I cannot stress enough that there is still strong potential opportunity for buyers right now. That opportunity comes in the form of “stale” listings. When a property sits on the market, a perception is created that something is wrong with it. Most of the time this is not true. Properties must be perceived as a value proposition to sell and more often than not, the owner of a “stale” apartment simply overpriced the apartment in the beginning and turned off most prospective buyers. This is a predictable outcome. All of the apartments currently on the market that have been listed since the fall will likely sell sometime this spring so the window of opportunity for buyers is fairly immediate. Many of the perceived ‘flaws’ can be mitigated by a creative buyer.
There are several reasons why properties turn stale, in the following order of importance:
- An apartment is overpriced by at least 10%. (That’s right, even 10% can kill a sale!)
- It “shows” poorly – this holds true for renovated as well as un-renovated apartments.
- The apartment is not being marketed properly – either the broker is not showing the unit in its best light on paper or in person.
- There was a recent low sale that was truly an outlier and it affects the other sales in the building.
Often, an apartment that doesn’t “show” well is perceived as an apartment in need of a renovation. These properties are the opportunities that many buyers might not see. With properties that have flaws that cannot be changed, such as units with low light or bad views, a high maintenance or an inconvenient location, these apartments have usually been unrealistically priced and can be a great opportunity for a buyer willing to overlook flaws at the right price.
STRATEGIES FOR SELLERS
For sellers there are many ways to maximize the chances of selling quickly, and at a great price.
- First and foremost, do not overprice your home. Be realistic and don’t be seduced by agents who toss out a high price. Overpricing will work against you in the long run.
- Make sure your apartment shows the best it can. Get a great stager if necessary. I cannot stress this enough. An apartment that shows well, sells well.
- Make sure your apartment is available to be shown when people want to see it. Provide access for everyone, especially in the first two weeks.
- If you are fortunate enough to have multiple offers, seize the best offer and do not push the bidders to go higher. I have seen many sellers go through this process and actually come out with a much lower price than they would have if they had acted on the best offer.
- Have a good attorney lined up to send out a contract as soon as possible. Maintaining the momentum of a deal can be critical in any market.
There are plenty of buyers in the market right now and that number will likely increase throughout the spring. This is an amazing opportunity for owners contemplating the sale of their properties. If you are considering selling, I am happy to meet with you to discuss value and strategy specific to your property.