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Looking for suggestions: Is it best to advertise at bottom price or leave room (and if so how much) for negotiation?
Background: Had listed with an agent for 50 days. Received 1-3 viewings per week. Received a verbal offer within about 8 days but written offer did not come until nearly 6 weeks later. It was $45k less than listed plus buyer wanted $6500K in subsidies. Could not afford to take the offer; pay EVERYBODY; and move on to the next house. Due to several other issues with the agent, I requested that the contract be terminated. Agent said no problem, removed house from listing, removed sign, etc. I am now doing a FSBO. But recently learned that without a signed cancellation contract, I could owe the agent a paycheck if I sold the house. So I put a "Coming Soon" rider on the post. As of Aug 31, I will be clear of the contract. I will then list on MRIS/Realtor.com w/invite to coop w/buyer agent. A neighbor who is an agent was kind enough to give me a REAL and complete CMA. So I priced the house at about $40K less with $10K room to negotiate. Still, the $40K is above about $16K to the last nearly comp house that sold a few weeks ago. My neighbor suggested to go just under $400K. I can afford to list at $399,990 (my bottom price) but am wondering if I should leave room and list at $404,990 or just leave it at the $408,990. I don't want to appear "chasing the market" or give the impression that I will continue to drop the price.
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I'd leave like $10K wiggle room. You really want to price as close to what you'll really accept or else you're just wasting everyone's time, including your own.
That's a really tough call, and we're in a similar situation ourselves, though our bottom is in the $292,000 range. We decided to list for $299,000, even considering the minimal negotiating room, in order to capture all the people doing searches for $xxx,xxx - $300,000. I think it was worth it in our case, but I'm still waiting for our first offer and just hoping we don't lose it because we can't negotiate enough.
In your case, I'm not really sure what I'd do. Besides reading unverifiable stories from complete strangers online, I've never seen (or known anyone whose seen) a house go for asking price, even in better markets. So keep in mind that even though a lower price will be bringing in a lot more buyers, you'll need a very special kind to actually take the house without any concessions. Whether it's worth it or not, people need to feel like they're getting a deal compared to asking price.
Do you have anything else that you can use to negotiate? Maybe leaving certain appliances or 'extras' (fire pit, porch furniture, playset, etc). These might help should you decide to list for rock bottom. You can always counter by saying "I'm sorry, I can't go down any further on price, but I can throw in..." and it might be enough to keep a buyer interested. We're kind of counting on that ourselves.
In any case, good luck!
Well, I am already giving up 3 rooms of custom window treatment. I could give up one more room and the washer/dryer. I like the idea of looking around for items to throw in, but this house is really loaded with amenities from cherry built-in bookcases to a hand painted mural to built-in speakers in 3 rooms--and this beside a gourmet kitchen, hard wood and tile floors, a finished bonus room, professional landscaping and the list just goes on and on. The lot is excellent, semi private and backs up to deep woods that will really always be there (protected water shed area).
I also like the idea of keeping the $10K, but this means I would miss those searching at $400K. Oh well, I do have about a week to decide. Thanks for the suggestions.
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