Selling Homes in Sacramento is Like Herding Cats

Cat-Herding-Home-Selling-SacramentoWorking in real estate and selling homes in Sacramento is somewhat like herding cats. Just for the record, I don’t run a cat ranch or anything, but there are 3 cats who live in my home in Land Park, so I know a little something about herding cats. Cats will do whatever they want to do. They are somewhat predictable, but there are times a cat will completely freak you out, and the Sacramento real estate market is a good comparison. Just when you think that cat is headed for the litter box, it will abruptly stop and throw up on your feet.

I always look for trends because, as a Sacramento real estate agent, it helps me to properly advise clients. You know, just because buyers were wild and crazy last spring doesn’t mean that activity carries through to August. August is typically a slowing down month. A time for families to finish vacation plans, shop for back-to-school clothes, and prepare homes for winter which, in Sacramento, means closing the garage door.

I’m looking forward to the Sacramento Autumn Home Selling Market. It’s generally spectacular every year, and it shouldn’t be any different for 2013. About a week after Labor Day, the flood gates will open. That’s my prediction. But getting into escrow and closing are two distinct things. Any monkey can get into escrow. Closing is another story.

There are signs of increased listing activity right now. Sellers are calling and asking about selling homes in Sacramento. From just yesterday, I have 3 new listings in Elk Grove on the horizon, a home in Roseville will hit the market today, and I’m meeting with another seller in Citrus Heights this weekend.

Buyers, on the other hand, are a bit slower to submit offers now. They are spending more time thinking about it. Not every transaction that every agent has in escrow will close. I’m seeing more fallouts from buyers with cold feet, buyers who can’t qualify, buyers who probably should not have been trying to buy a home in the first place. There are also buyers who can’t understand that a rising market means if they’re buying a short sale, that price might be higher after waiting a few months.

What we need are incentives like my cat Pia’s freeze-dried chicken treats that we can throw in front of these guys. We need to continually check in with our buyers and make sure they’re still on board and headed for closing. Remove obstacles from their path. Keep the positive vibe going. Because I tell ya, it’s not easy herding cats when you’re selling homes in Sacramento.

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