Search Your Home Sale History Before Listing in Sacramento

Home Sales HistoryToday I want to share a tidbit about a way to search your home sale history before listing your Sacramento home. You might consider this a bit over-the-top analytical, but it’s important information that many listing agents overlook. I mean, let’s face it, in this town, many agents are so elated just to take a listing that they don’t spend a lot of time looking at the home sale history or otherwise scrutinizing the data available to them. Many agents just run the comps in a half-mile radius and get on with the show.

But that home sale history can prepare a seller for the actual home selling experience. You know what they say about history, right? It repeats itself. Not always verbatim but close enough for government work, as I like to kid about.

What is home sale history, you might ask? It is the information available to your Sacramento listing agent in MLS about previous sales of the same property. Two of the important items in that home sale history are 1) the date the home had previously been listed and 2) how long it took that home to sell. You need to examine both aspects of that history because a home that closed escrow in December has much lower demand than a home selling in May, for example.

However, if a home was listed during the height of our Sacramento home selling season in the spring, and the days on market exceed several months, it might mean it will take your home that long to sell today. Of course, for me it is easier because I remember what each of our decades and years were like in real estate history. It’s all there in my rear view mirror. That’s an advantage to hiring an agent with decades of experience.

In fact, in a conversation with a seller yesterday about what a pain it was for him to sell a rental home in 1987, I was able to shed a bit of light on why. Because that was the year following the 1986 Tax Reform Act, which limited passive write-offs for investors. Put a huge damper on the investment market in California.

I try to set my seller’s expectations when taking a listing if the home sale history shows a bunch of previous sales, all within 2 to 3 months of listing. That’s important information for a seller (and her agent) to know. It could be something as simple as the seller owns a unique home that doesn’t fit parameters from most of the traditional homebuyers of today. Which just means the home might take longer to sell.

It could also mean the home was not updated. Naturally, if the home with a long sale history of many months to sell is now remodeled, it will most likely sell faster. I could go on and on. There are dozens of conclusions a Sacramento listing agent can draw from studying the home sale history. Ask your agent to share that information. It’s readily available in MLS under the “history” tab.

Elizabeth Weintraub

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