When Is a Good Time to Reduce the Sales Price in Sacramento?

reduce sales price

The best time to reduce the sales price in Sacramento is pretty much never.

An agent from a real estate website asked when is it a good time to reduce the sales price, meaning if a home doesn’t sell within a certain time period, at which point should a seller drop the price. Trying to establish set guidelines is pretty much impossible because every home is different and the temperature of your local real estate market varies with the seasons, among other criteria.

For example, some homes are simply more difficult to sell than others. Sacramento homes in challenging locations are hard to sell, like homes that back up to a school or a basketball court. Sacramento homes without updates in an area of remodeled homes makes them difficult to sell. Sacramento homes with weird layouts, white appliances, old carpeting, no first-floor bedroom or full bath, tiny yards, deferred maintenance . . . you get the idea. And let’s not even talk about short sales in Sacramento, which fall to the bottom of a buyer’s wish list since most need to sell at market value but take 3 times as long to close.

I’ve sold homes that have been on the market for 90 days at list price, and we never reduced. Sometimes it takes the right buyer. I never discard a home as “impossible to sell” especially when the seller loves the home because it means there is another person somewhere else who will also love it. I just need to find that person and appeal to that buyer. Nobody is that unique.

However, in today’s Sacramento real estate market at this particular period of the year, a good time to reduce the sales price is NEVER. When buyers see a price reduction, the immediate thought that pops into buyers’ heads is “how much lower will they go?” They think a seller is desperate and maybe the seller is. They show no mercy and head straight for the jugular with a sharp knife.

The best way to reduce the price is to take the home off the market and put it back as a brand new listing. You hit the market just right, at the right time with a new set of buyers, and BINGO. The home sells. It’s a bit more work for this Sacramento Realtor, transferring documents, photographs, lockbox settings, so forth, but it works. If it didn’t, I wouldn’t advise my sellers to do it.

Perhaps a better question to ask is not when do you reduce the sales price but when do you reassess the marketing, the length of time on the market and make adjustments? At least monthly. Certainly, initially, at the 21-day mark. Some homes just take longer to sell.

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