Home owners should accept realistic house prices

Mortgages and House PricesWith house prices expected to fall by 10 percent over the next few years, pricing your home at a realistic level is becoming more important as the house market continues to weaken.

The latest report from the Ernst and Young Item Club paints a gloomy picture for the future of the housing market over the next two years. Predicting that there will 40 percent fewer people moving home, the economists in the Item Club believe that this will help drive house prices down by 10 percent.

So if you decide to sell your home now, it is vital to price your house at a realistic level in order to attract buyers in a position to proceed with the purchase of your property. Lets look at a few ways to help you price your home at the right levels in this difficult market.

Realistic Property Pricing

With Rightmove reporting that estate agents are now holding record levels of housing stock and time on the market has increased from 82 to 85 days, competing for buyer attention relies on realistic pricing. House prices are falling, this is a brutal fact and is one that sellers have to accept if they are to sell their home.

Look at what is selling in your local estate agents. You will see those homes being marketed at late 2007 prices are still hanging around whereas owners that accept that the value of their property has fallen are finding buyers, even in this difficult market.

It’s an unpalatable truth that the value of your home has fallen, but this is bourne out by RightMove’s latest house price index which states that house asking prices fell in April by 0.1%. This is the first time that this has occured in April since RightMove began their records.

Those sellers that price their home competitively will find buyers, so bite the bullet and market your property for a realistic price.

Property Portal price breaks

With an increasing number of buyers using property portals such as Rightmove, pricing your home to fall within the pricing bands in the search drop down lists, is gaining in importance.

Take RightMove, for example. Notice how the “price from” list has large pricing bands as the property values increases. The pricing bands are in £10,000 increments up to £300,000 and then £25,000 increments up to asking prices of £500,000.

Buyers search according to their budgets so if they are willing to spend up to £350,000, for example, then your property priced at £355,000 will be outside their search criteria and you may have missed a sale opportunity, because of the way the property portal price bands work.

To increase the chances of selling your home, consider the pricing bands on property portals and make sure that you price your home in a band that will attract the most buyers in your price range.

Use a good local estate agent

Whilst we are fans of Internet only estate agents such as The House Network (see our review here), as they provide a cost effective service, we feel that you really need the services of a good local estate agent who has a strong mailing list of buyers searching for property like yours.

A good agent will also hold a list of buyers who have viewed similar house to yours and who may be interested in your property. This is a service that Internet only estate agents cannot deliver, unfortunately.

Proactive marketing is key in these difficult market conditions, so it is another unpalatable truth that you really do need to pay for the marketing skills and local knowledge of a good estate agent.

So a realistic pricing policy, backed up with a careful analysis of property portal price bands and the skills of a local estate agent may well mean that you will be one of the successful house sellers in the near future.

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