Tuesday, June 3, 2008

My Agent Can't Sell My Arlington Condo. Can you?

Question:
(via Chat) Sorry, I'm not an experienced chat user. My name is Doug and I'm the owner of unit 9XX in (Arlington Condo). We are looking for a replacement Realtor who is willing to aggressively sell our property. Interested?

Answer:
Hello Doug,
I was on the phone and I missed your Blog chat.
I see your home is still active on the MLS. Realtors aren't allowed to engage in conversations with people that are currently represented. (if you find an agent that does, they shouldn't be!)

What I can tell you is that XYZ is a very well respected agent.
Thanks,
Frank

Reply:
Thanks for responding, Frank.

... We're just not seeing, in our opinion, the desire on her part to get this sold. We need some movement here.
Doug

Reply Reply
No problem.
The Arlington condo market is really tough now. You have some VERY stiff competition from builders that are unloading units left and right (and bank owned properties). I also looked at unit #XYZ for sale in your building and from first glance, it looks more upgraded and larger, for less.
What I suggest is that you ask for a report "what has sold in this zip code in the last 60 days from $400k to $465k" and that way you can see exactly what IS selling and what you need to do to sell your place.
Are you getting showings? If not, it might be overpriced.
If you are getting showings, ask for feedback, if they say it is overpriced, they aren't negotiating, they are just telling you it is overpriced (and yes feedback DOES come in that says "priced well").
In my building, Clarendon 1021, I get approached all the time to sell listings. But my first questions is "are you prepared to take a serious loss from your purchase price in 2005?" If they say no, I can't help them.
And I just looked up unit XYZ that sold for $475k. Each floor is about $3k, so that makes it $15k higher, and it has two spots... what $15k-$20k more? That alone, without looking into detail tells me you are at least $30k overpriced (possibly much more). But again, I didn't look closely and pricing can take me a few hours.
My guess is you aren't listening to your Realtor. And what really stinks is many new or inexperienced (or bad) agents might take on the deal and then just try and beat you down in price after signing you up, ala "we tried." So the first agent spends a ton of time, the client doesn't listen, and they finally listen to the 2nd agent.
(don't go with an agent that will tell you they can get you $515k. Read my Buying a Listing post)
So if she is telling you to drop the price, she is probably not pulling your leg.
- Written by Frank Borges LL0SA- Broker FranklyRealty.com (please report typos)
(some details have been altered to keep the email details private)

2 comments:

Doug said...

Yes, we're fully aware of, and track as closely as possible all the competition in the area. Unit #XX is NOT larger, but they just did the upgraded appliances and counter-tops before putting it on the market at that price.

We do get the report from XXX and have monitored the pricing trends. We are still within the median grouping on price per square foot.

We do get showings, but they are usually calls from agents off the MLS listing, since XXXX doesn't do open houses. She will, periodically, have an associate hold one. We had such an open house this past weekend with a dozen people through in the two hours it was open. Feedback is always requested, and XXXX is especially good at doing follow-ups with other agents who come through and keeping us up to date on a weekly basis. We have only had one state it was over-priced - and that was back in February from a low-baller. The vast majority of comments fall in the "shows really well" category. And, given the location, a sense of wonderment that it hasn't sold.

Unit #XXX. Sigh. The bane of our existence. That particular unit was an investment property from the original date of sale in 1995. The unit was in such deplorable condition the new owner is out around $20k, just to get it up to rental condition. Also, that particular sale was quite some time back (it was also a get-out-Dodge sale as well). Unit #XXX sold since then at $498k.

We are listening to XXX. However, she has not recommended another drop in asking price for the last couple of months. We are NOT expecting to get the asking price; never did. We consider that only a starting point to negotiate down from. We also have in hand an appraisal we had done in March for $480k.

So that's pretty much where we're at right now.

Doug

FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- BLOG.FranklyRealty.com said...

Sorry, I wish I could help. I can't really do much while you are under representation. I wish I could, but even if I could, I'm not sure there would be much to add.

I can say that Open Houses don't sell houses. Agents do them to get new buyers that are looking 2-3 months out.
Frank