Profile picture for pinky3310

Can you set a selling price for your house that is higher than its worth?

I am not agressively trying to sell my house but if the price is right I will sell.  Currently the market is at or below what my house is worth and I am not willing to sell at a loss and I wont sell if I cannot make some type of profit so is it ok to set a selling price of what I want to get rather than what its worth?
  • August 05 2009 - Yulee
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Answers (17)

At the end of the day, your home will only sell for what the buyer's lender appraises it for, and not a penny more. That appraiser is going to use comps - the same information that your agent would use when writing up a CMA. 

It's not the price you want that is going to determine the selling price, it's the market value that will. 

A lot of sellers have a misconception that a cash buyer can and will pay more than the property will appraise for - this is simply not true. 90% of the time that a buyer comes to the bargaining table with cash, it is only to offer you more incentive to pick their offer over others. Usually the incentive isn't that they don't need a mortgage, but that they can close within a 2-3 week period. Once you accept the offer, the cash buyer will get their bank on the scene and have the property appraised. Once they close, the bank give them a mortgage, and the cash gets returned. 

  • October 09 2013
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Yes. Absolutely, it's entirely up to you on what you want to list your home for. I suggest doing some research to see what similar properties in your area are going for. Often times sellers will list there properties higher than what they are worth and settle during the negotiation process at fair market value.
  • October 09 2013
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There are a few ways to look at this, while you can certainly price a home above the market value it's not necessarily the best way to get top dollar for your home. Often we have found the best strategy (depending on demand in your area) is to price a little below market value, promote heavily and create a "bidding war" with multiple offers. Keep in mind, there is no danger in under pricing your home unless you are too eager to accept the first offer you get. As long as you wait for multiple offers you can truly see the top amount able buyers in your market are willing to pay for your home.
Zillow's "Make Me Move" program is a great way to test the water on the price you have in mind.
Another way to generate top price (sometimes even above market value) is offering a lease option or seller finance. Just be sure to meet with an agent to discuss the full ramifications of this option and any potential issues there could be with the underlying loan you have in place.
Finally, you could also meet with a Realtor and have them watch your neighborhood value. As soon as it appreciates to the price you're wanting to sell you can get on the market and strike while the iron is hot. This prevents you from sitting on the market while it's lower and creating the sense that you're a stale listing.
Hope this helps, best of luck!
  • October 08 2013
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Profile picture for Todd Aichinger
You can go a little high but too much over will just put you out of the market.
  • October 08 2013
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Profile picture for RealTimeNJ
You can set your selling price at whatever you want.  If it is completely out of the ballpark it simply wont sell.  Someone else mentioned that it is the slow time of the year, but you should really look at what the inventory is in your market.  If homes are moving still than it may be worth listing.  We have some markets in NJ that are better than others just like anywhere else in the country.  If your market is a sellers market than you may want to try your hand, just dont price yourself too high.  Good luck!
  • October 08 2013
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Unless you get an "all cash" offer which trumps an appraisal--you should have it priced accordingly.
  • October 08 2013
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Profile picture for Chris Boyles

We are coming into a slower time of the year to sale a home and so I would wait till the first of the year to list it if you are trying to get top dollar for the home.  There will be more buyers in the market at that time and will give you some time to let the market come up to where you would like to be on the sales price.

  • October 08 2013
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Profile picture for DanGorfinkle
Aside from the appraisal concerns that others have mentioned here, the real danger in pricing your home too high is that you are basically helping your neighbors sell their homes faster and undermining your own sale.  As buyers compare local listings, they will see your home priced higher than most others and think "I like it, but I can get something similar for $30,000 less (as an example) down the street, so I'm going to go for that one." If you aren't ready to sell at the price the market is at, and you can afford to wait, that may be your best bet.
  • October 08 2013
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I like Zillow, but in the end it can only judge homes by htd sq footage and homes selling in proximity, it cannot determine condition or anything else.  Like home is on the water or the shack next door was a meth house and sold in foreclosure.  So contact a professional, I would never use it for valuing your home.
  • October 08 2013
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Be careful about "over pricing". Even if you listed your home and got an offer on it at the price that you set, it still has to appraise for that price. If it can't appraise for that, then you have wasted your time and efforts. Unfortunately appraisers take into account what the homes around you are selling for, even the short sales and foreclosures.
 Speaking with an agent is your best bet on setting an appropriate price for your home. If it isn't the price you are looking for it may be best to wait since the market in most areas is improving. Good luck! 
  • October 08 2013
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Profile picture for jimstarwalt
As stated you can "list "your home at any price you want. But, what if you find a buyer? They want the home because they all of the fantastic upgrades etc, but they need a loan or, at least want an appraisal on the property? It would be very rare to find a buyer who will pay more than it's worth.
Let's say the buyer is in place, you are one week from closing, your home is packed up, you have a new residence in line, and the appraisal comes in low and the buyer can't buy it now?  Now what?
Good luck, Jim
  • October 08 2013
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You can list your house for whatever price you want, the question is what does listing your home for above market value do?  In the previous years since 2006, it would sit on the market longer, frustrate you as a homeowner and usually end up selling for less than it is worth.  That being said, we are not in the declining market anymore, so in an ascending market try to price at market value to sale quicker, overpricing too much will still result in the home not selling or just sitting on the market.  Most buyers pay attention when writing an offer on how long the home has been sitting.  They also might not even look at a home that has been on the market too long thinking something is wrong with it.  I hope that helps.

  • October 08 2013
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Of course, the seller has the control, the agent provides the market data and facts, however if you really want to sell, all statistics show the quicker the home sells the highest price you are likely to receive. An over priced listing helps sell other homes. It is best to work with a professional agent who is confident enough to tell you the truth. They will show the same confidence when negotiating for you
  • September 14 2013
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Profile picture for ShawnChenRE

Pricing too high can be a double edged sword.  If you find that one buyer who really must have it, then it will work out.  Otherwise, pricing a house outside of what the surrounding market will support usually limits the exposure of the house, thus leading to potentially lower priced. 

The market will ultimately set your price and a good Realtor will take current market dynamics, house, features, location, and everything into account when providing you advice on the sale price.

At the end of the day, it's up to the seller how to price it.  Your Realtor will be prepared to navigate you through it no matter what you decide.

  • September 13 2013
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Hi Pinky,
I agree with Christina and Sunnyview.  Christina briefly mentioned the negative effect of overpricing - we call it "a stale listing".  Listings over about 90 days tend to get "overlooked".
One last thought....if you were able to offer some sort of owner financing, you might be able to attract a higher than market price for your home.
Good Luck!
Hugh
  • May 05 2011
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Pinky3310 - yes, you can do whatever you want.  However, you do need to know that doing this is likely to be a negative effect on the prospective sale of your home.

You'll really be wasting your time by doing this and wasting your money if you are paying to advertise it anywhere.  Don't think just about the time involved in putting up on free internet sites, but also think about time wasted in fielding phone calls and hosting open houses and showings for people who will not purchase your home especially once they see that it's over priced.

Frankly, if you absolutely do not want to sell for a certain price and that price is above market value, don't even bother.  Just wait until the market moves back up into the price you want to obtain.
  • August 05 2009
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Profile picture for sunnyview
Yes you can. As the owner, you can set any price that you want. On Zillow, they call it a "Make Me Move" price. You can read more about it here. It is the magical price that you would consider boxing up and moving for. It is not a promise to sell, but a price that you might sell for if approached. 
  • August 05 2009
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