A tale of two sales

Unless you are an estate agent, you probably won’t have seen graphs like the ones below before. But they tell a salutary tale of two properties, one of which sold in a week and the other which took two months to sell.

Both properties were geographically close, roughly the same price and both were extensively advertised for sale on a range of property websites including Rightmove. So why the difference in how quickly they took to sell? That’s a matter of setting an asking price calculated to generate the maximum interest.

The first property (see graph below) was keenly priced, attracted a lot of interest and sold (i.e. an offer was accepted) for well over Home Report value in a week.

This property was marked as sold (the ‘s’ on 20th April) after just four days of advertising. The successful offer was well in excess of Home Report value.

The second property was more ambitiously priced at the start. As you can see from the second graph below, there was an initial flurry of interest, but that waned.  Interest spiked again when, a few weeks later, the asking price was changed and this time round, the property sold in a week.

Interest waned after a burst of early activity. It spiked again after a price change (the £ sign) and sold shortly thereafter.

So, no harm done them? Well, the offer for the second property was not quite as much over the Home Report value as had been the case for the first property.  And the owner had had to keep their home ready for viewings for around two months.  Most importantly, the owner had a longer period of uncertainty before a deal was in the bag.

Now, that doesn’t mean that lower is always better when it comes to asking prices. It depends on the property and the market.  But setting the right asking price – the price that will generate maximum interest from appropriate buyers – is an important element in success.

So, if you are choosing an estate agent, there are two important lessons you might take from these two sales.

Firstly, be wary of estate agents who tempt you with an unrealistic valuation of your home. An overambitious valuation leads to an unrealistic asking price and, all to easily, an overpriced property becomes an underpriced sale.

Secondly, listen to your chosen agent’s advice about the asking price. It’s not always the case that the higher the asking price, the higher the offer.

At Pacitti Jones we have a track record of achieving swift sales at often exceptional prices. We regularly feature in the top rank of agents on Rightmove for speed of sale.  That’s because we believe in an honest valuation and an effective pricing strategy.  If you would like a free valuation from the people who know, you can request one here.