Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Pricing It Right

When doing a CMA we often become our own worst enemy when we allow ourselves to get caught up in the "numbers". The seller has already told you what they want, your comps say something different, and your gut tells you something else!

You're convinced that the seller is knowledgeable, because they act confident about their price. The information you've gathered is accurate, but is less then the seller wants. You really want this listing, but at the right price. What do you do?

The important "number" to be concerned about is not the list price, but the seller's net proceeds.

After all, if the house sells for $10K over asking price but the buyer wants $20K in costs, how important is the sales price........ really?!

When you present the seller with their cost break-down, don't use the sales price they suggest; use the sales price you think is real. I usually preface my cost analysis by saying something like " The market will dictate what your property is really worth - and buyers are usually pretty educated to value after they've seen several properties. Let me show you what an offer would look like "to you in your pocket" from a buyer that is pretty much in tune with the market."

Most agents do a cost break-down based on the seller's price or the "listed price" at the listing presentation. Stop doing that! This is where you shoot yourself in the foot.

If you do my imaginary buyer break-down, and bring the price in at what you expect - and even throw in some closing costs - you might be surprised when the seller kind of nods in agreement at the "net" on your cost sheet. I usually pad the loan amount by about 1K, since the seller usually doesn't really know their loan balance, or even if they do, they don't take into account their last month's interest.

If you plant the seed of "X" in the seller's pocket, and it turns out to be "Y"with the offer, you're going to have difficulty getting them to sign. Don't do a cost break-down at the seller's price which may show a net of (say) 85K, when in actuality they will probably walk away with something like 78-80K. And guess what? If they're going to take "less" who else do they expect to participate?

This technique works really well, since you're using an example of "another agent's" offer on the property, so it doesn't give the appearance that it's your doing.

Being the agent for the seller doesn't mean you have to do what ever they say. Being the professional, and realizing what's really important is why they're going to hire you.

Remember, the sales price is for bragging rights to the neighbor. What you actually put in your pocket is what's important.

1 comment: said...

Another great idea. I now realize that my technique of giving them 4 or 5 net proceeds sheets to cover the spectrum from fantasy to reality has a major flaw: once they've seen that "Fantasy Net" number, it's pretty hard to forget.

I'll change!!