comparable market analysis

Sellers Searching for the Proverbial Needle in the Haystack

needle in the haystack

Oh, excuse me, I now see you’re looking for the needle in the haystack. Well, why didn’t you say so? I had no idea you needed another $100,000 out of the sale of your home. Here, wait a minute, let me fix that for you. This is important, I know. You need to net a certain amount of money or you can’t do what you want to do. I get it. Why, we’ll just raise the price by $100,000. Easy peasy. Oh, wait. That won’t work. Because even if we find that foolish buyer: the needle in the haystack who doesn’t know the home prices in your neighborhood, the home won’t appraise.

No appraisal at value = no loan = no buyer.

This means we need to find a cash buyer, and there are fewer of those. Also, the problem with most cash buyers is the fact they tend to be a bit more sophisticated. Not always, mind you, certainly not more so than you, but most of the time. It’s probably how they earned all of that money, you know, by making wise investments and smart decisions based on sound principles. Tell me, do you think a cash buyer will pay $100,000 over market value for your home? Why do you think they would agree to do this?

Now, I know you looked at my CMA. You even acknowledged that it is impossible to get another $100,000 for your home. Yet, I see you still want to accomplish that directive.

Maybe what you need to do is stay put for another year or three? Or, you could rent out the house. Even though I reached into my needle in the haystack files to look for such a buyer, I haven’t been able to find this kind of buyer yet. Nothing but straw. It might take a few more years.

Which makes me totally bummed. My Harry Potter wand is broken. I can’t grant 3 wishes today. Your Magic Eight Ball says better luck next time. You may fare better to polish up your skills at Blackjack than you would hoping to sell your home for more than it is worth. Here is a tip: double down on 10s or better.

Do you know that the National Association of Realtors reports 87% of home buyers used an agent last year to buy a home? Our buyer is very likely to be represented by another agent. That agent will tell the buyer your home is overpriced, and then what can we do? Shoot him? You can’t just shoot people at random anymore, even if it easier to buy a gun than a stick of gum.

Much as I would like to, I also don’t write the rules about Sacramento real estate. We all wish our market was like the Bay Area but it is not. All real estate is local, and our Sacramento market is slowing down. At least you will get the straight story from me, even if it’s not what you want to hear.

Elizabeth Weintraub

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