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Single family home sales in SW Florida climbed in March to 1,068 sales.  This is down 7.1% from last year but up 37% from February’s home sales figures.  We would say this is good news for the local real estate market as sales are holding up nicely.  We think they could have been higher if there were more listings on the market ready to compete for buyers.

Cape Coral real estate sales prices Fort Myers real estate

In speaking with several real estate agents and new home communities it seems that buyers this year watched the huge price increases we’ve seen over the past few years and many decided it was time to consider new construction.  For many years new construction was priced out of the market because existing homes were far less expensive.  Existing homes were undervalued and new home construction basically had to sit on the sidelines or risk building at a loss.

With the recent run-up in prices builders can compete again.  This will be news for many sellers in SW Florida as they’re not used to competing with new construction in many years, but those days are back.  Our market was undervalued and had to rise. Now that it has, competitive forces come into play and will temper large price increases going forward.  We may be back to a normal market where we’ll be watching indicators that may affect our market like supply and demand, along with inflation, the economy, interest rates, consumer confidence, insurance rates, and others.

All these forces affect the local and national market.  Because we’re no longer undervalued by a wide margin, and because free money is leaving the scene, and flood insurance rates may rise, the market now must react to natural market forces.  We were insulated the past 5 years.

This market wasn’t a lot of fun on the way down, although it was fun on the way up, but now we’re getting close to market equilibrium.  There is still much room for market growth, but it may need to be sustainable growth based on reasonable market factors.  Most agents would agree it’s actually kind of healthy to get back to a stable growing market.

Even in a stable growing market there will be pockets of sub markets that will thrive and some may struggle. Some areas of town will be hotter than others.  Some subdivisions are still fighting off remnants of short sales and foreclosures, or the association is making up deficiencies left by members that didn’t pay.

Some price ranges have less supply and more demand, and vice versa.  You cannot price your home by how the overall market is doing, just as we can’t price SW Florida based upon how the National market is doing.

If you’re considering selling, it pays to consult an agent who understands the market and what is really taking place.  You don’t need an agent that simply reads the headlines and prices your home based upon where they heard the market is heading.  By the time you read about it in the papers or see it on TV, chances are the market has already shifted.  The market rarely stays in one place for long.

Listing inventory is rising again.  In the next few weeks we’ll be introducing a new system that will really shake things up in the SW Florida real estate market.  We’re not ready to release details just yet, but if you’re considering selling your home, now might be a good time to call the Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group 239-489-4042 or stop by our office at 7910 Summerlin Lakes Dr Fort Myers, FL 33907

We’ll make sure you understand the market forces so you can make a good pricing decision, and you’re going to love the new program coming soon!

Good luck and Happy House Hunting!
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When we show up on listing appointments where the seller was previously listed with another broker we often ask them how they arrived at their price.  Inevitably the answer we receive is the broker priced it that way.  When we look at comparable sales sometimes we find that the home was priced correctly and just not marketed effectively.  Other times we find that the home was overpriced and had no chance of selling.

Fort Myers Real Estate Tips, Cape Coral sell your home

If the broker recommended a price higher than the market would allow, it’s not your fault.  Some agents honestly don’t know the market..  Keep in mind a small percentage of agents sell 10 or more homes per year.  In fact, many agents didn’t sell a home last year.  Last time I ran numbers the average agent sold less than one single family home in the previous year.  This tells me that a large percentage of the homes are being sold by a small group of producing agents.  It could be something like the top 15% of all agents sell 80% of all the homes.  You get the idea.

Or, perhaps the listing agent needed listings, so taking over priced listings was the only way they could compete.  You see, each listing generates buyer calls.  The agent who receives the buyer call doesn’t actually have to sell that listing to make money.  They can convert those buyer calls into sales on other listings priced at fair market value.

In fact, the longer they keep that over priced listing the more buyer calls it generates, and potentially the more sales the agent can convert.  Your over priced listing becomes an asset to the agent.

Regardless of whether the agent didn’t know better and took an over priced listing, or used the seller to generate other sales, you the seller lost.  It cost you time and money.  And either way, it’s not your fault, unless:

1. You ignored an experienced agent’s advice and selected a price higher than the market.

2. You interviewed several agents and selected the agent who gave the highest price.

3. You priced your home compared to what other sellers in your neighborhood were asking vs. what they were actually selling for.

4. You became emotionally attached to a price. Perhaps you Need a certain amount. The market only cares about what the home is worth, not what a seller needs out of it.

5. You have the nicest home in the neighborhood.  If we could pick it up and move it you’d probably get more money, but the neighborhood you’re in is probably holding you back.

We may have to reposition your home in the marketplace to account for this.  Selling a home in today’s market isn’t easy.  Prices have climbed to a level recently where buyers have turned off if the list price vastly exceeds value.  Many buyers have decided it’s time to buy new now that used home prices have climbed so much.

Your home may be worth more than you think.  Prices have climbed nicely in the past few years.  It is not however a license to over price your home.  Selling a home is a lot like fishing, and when prices reach a certain point the fish stop biting.  If your home is priced where the fish are it will attract some bites.  If your bait is located 20 feet above where the fish are, the fish don’t even know it’s there, because they’re not looking there.  Fish swim in schools, and so do buyers.  If you have a $200,000 home and price it at $250,000, the $200,000 buyers never go see it.  The $250k buyers might look, but quickly realize it’s not what they’re shopping for.  You miss the market both ways.

If your home didn’t sell, it may not be your fault.  But then again, you are the one paying the price.  It pays to find a Top Agent and listen.  The market will speak.  A Top agent will help you understand the market before it’s too late.  If you have a home to sell, or if you tried once already and gave up, perhaps it’s time to call in the professionals.  Always call the Ellis Team at RE/MAX  239-489-4042     www.TopAgent.com

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Sometime today the Ellis Team YouTube video channel will reach the 200,000 view mark. We thought it might be a good idea to recap some of our top videos over the past few years that has drawn our team so much attention.

Ellis Team YouTube Channel Fort Myers Real Estate

Visit our YouTue Channel www.youtube.com/brettellisfl

Our latest video is our April 2014 SW Florida Real Estate Market Update where we update viewers on some current changes we’re seeing in the market.  Prices have been rising however there may be some surprises on the way when new March 2013 official sales numbers are released later this month.

Our most popular video of all time is the Fort Myers Beach-Sanibel Island-SW Florida Video we posted in September of 2011.  It is a fantastic video about the Fort Myers and Sanibel Island beaches and is a great overview of the Islands.

Our next most popular video would be NBC Nightly News 10-8-08 Flip Side of Foreclosures  Brett did with Brian Williams on the NBC Tonight Show back in October of 2008

A fun video we did was when Hillary Clinton was running for President of the United States.  She commented on a story we did for the Today Show about how Florida would vote and how real estate was affecting the vote back in the 2008 election.

Some people really like our client testimonial page Dex put together.

A lot of agents nationwide appreciated our Split Screen commercial where we showed all agents are not alike.

Still others really liked the Innovative Sales Techniques story NBC-2 did on our team and how we sell homes versus the competition.

Let us know your favorite video. There are over 150 to choose from. Most of all, thank you SW Florida for making us one of the most watched YouTube Channels in SW Florida.

 
If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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Aren’t all agents the same?  Isn’t it just a matter of posting my home on MLS and someone will sell it?

These are common questions sellers have.  The answer is choosing an average agent could cost you thousands, and choosing the wrong agent could cost you even more.  You can be legally responsible for the actions of your agent, so choosing an experienced knowledgeable agent can make the difference between selling and not selling, or even a lawsuit.

Fort Myers real estate Cape Coral Which agent should I hire

All agents do not work the same.  In fact, some agents don’t even work much.  Some agents treat real estate as a business and don’t have any other jobs.  Their sole income is derived from working with buyers and sellers.  Some agents even invest money into their business by advertising more, sending out mailers, online advertising, etc.  Sure, sometimes the broker pays for this and splits up the services amongst all their agents, and sometimes the agent pays for all this.

Some agents attend seminars out of town to learn from top agents throughout the country, and others stay home and listen to agents in their office complain.  Education is an investment back into the business that can pay dividends for your clients.

Some agents take their broker provided advertising and that’s really all they do, while others spend their own money and really promote their listings.  Some agents hire assistants to help out with tasks that could bog a busy person down freeing their time up to close more sales while some agents spend time doing tasks that are not a productive use of their time.

Some agents get a better price for their sellers’ homes because they are better negotiators, and because they expose the home to more buyers.  Some agents over-price homes just to get the listing ensuring the property sells for a lower price later on versus a higher price sooner into the listing.  Sometimes the over-priced home doesn’t sell at all.

Often times we generate multiple buyers for a property.  Choosing the best offer usually takes an experienced agent to evaluate all the fine details of the offer and read into the situation.  Wisdom and experience are invaluable at this stage.  Less experienced agents many times accept the highest price without regards to whether the buyer can actually close and what pitfalls might be involved rather than asking questions and perhaps countering the stronger buyer.

When asked the following question “Can hiring the wrong agent cost a seller money?” I think it was Shakespeare who replied “Let me count the ways!”  OK, so maybe Shakespeare didn’t answer that question but if he did that answer would have made sense.

There is a big difference between the skills of agents, and there is a remarkable difference in the ways agents present homes to the public.  I remember sitting through a class taught to Realtors on how to convince sellers that advertising doesn’t sell homes.  Today I came across a website by a local broker and he was stating those same reasons on how advertising won’t sell your home, presumably because he doesn’t invest much in advertising.

We’re currently tracking dozens of sellers who listed with less experienced agents, sometimes at inflated prices, and their homes are still on the market.  They’re locked into listing agreements and they regret their choice.  The time to really ask questions is upfront, and make sure you ask probing questions to seek answers, not to hear what you want to hear.

Everyone likes to choose people based upon who makes them feel good, but in real estate feeling good is best defined at the closing table, not who lists the home at the highest price or tells you what you want to hear.

If you list your home and go to the bother of keeping it clean so people can march through your home at anytime wouldn’t it make sense to work with someone who can shorten that process and get you top dollar, not bottom dollar after the market has rejected your home because it was over-priced?

If you have a home to sell, give us a call.  We’ll give you the facts so you can decide, and we’ll get your home sold for top dollar!  Not Peter Pan money, but real money!

If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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When the headlines come out in a few weeks experts will be talking about how sales prices are up over last year’s numbers, and that would be true.  At the Ellis Team we like to study the market and identify trends for our customers, and today we’ll pass that along to you.

Fort Myers real estate sales prices Cape Coral real estate

We first reported some possible trends we’d be keeping an eye on back on Feb 26th in a blog post Are SW Florida Real Estate Sales in Trouble?

Again last week we wrote about some subtle changes we’re seeing in the market. Listing Inventory Rises Slightly in February, Sales Increase- Is the SW Florida Real Estate Market Changing?

Today we’d like to talk about some pricing trends we’re seeing.  I pulled up March 2014 sales data the morning of April 1. Keep in mind it takes many days for some agents to input closings into MLS after they close at the end of the month.  Not sure why, but it’s been a reality for years.  Based upon preliminary numbers we’re seeing, median price for closed single family homes in Lee County Florida remains at $185,000.  This is the same number as officially reported in February.   In other words, median prices did not increase in March.

Average sale prices came in at $265,386 in March, down from February’s $311,536.  While both numbers are higher than March 2013, they are the same or lower than February 2014.  So what does this tell us?

It tells us experts will be telling us how much better the market is this year because prices are up over last year, but it doesn’t give us perspective.  Typically prices begin an upward trend in February culminating around April-May, and sometimes June.  This year we’re not seeing that.

Season tends to set the trend for the rest of the year.  For the past several years we’d see our big price gains during season then the market would ride the train for the rest of the year, typically with prices dipping back down a bit after season until the following season.

If preliminary numbers for March pan out, we appear to be flat lining at a time when prices normally increase.  It’s called seasonality of the market, and we’re not seeing the seasonality.  If this trend holds true, our market may have peaked and retrench a bit later this year.

Or, it could be a blip on the radar and mean nothing.  I try not to read too much into data until a developing trend emerges.  I do like to inform readers and agents as to some of the trends I’m watching.

A good agent shouldn’t be tied to the outcome.  Far too often I’ve seen agents make predictions and then choose data that supports their predictions. Right now we’re not predicting anything, just reporting some things we’re keeping an eye on.  As a seller, this is information you might want to consider when pricing a home.  We do similar analysis at the subdivision level as well, as all real estate is local and just because one area of the county is hot or cold doesn’t mean all subdivisions are at the same rate. Last week we posted a more complete analysis on our YouTube channel with graphs and trends you might find useful.  Go to www.Youtube.com/brettellisfl to watch that video.

Where is the market headed?  Will it pick up steam or cool off in 2014?  Nobody knows the answers, however we will keep you posted every step of the way.  Knowledge is power.  Not having knowledge can cost you money, both on the buyer and seller end.  People think the value of a Realtor lies in their MLS data.  Sure, you can search the MLS at www.Topagent.com. That’s not the value of a Realtor though.  The true value is a Realtor’s ability to guide you through the tricky real estate maze and help you make the best decisions for you.  We take that very seriously as do many full-time Realtors.

Always hire an experienced agent.  Finding out the hard way later on can cost you in more ways than you know.

Good luck and Happy House Hunting!
If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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Listing inventory rose slightly in Fort Myers and Cape Coral real estate markets in February from 6,192 single family homes on the market in January to 6,271 last month. Listing inventory typically peaks in January and declines slightly in February before Declining rapidly in March due to so many seasonal sales occurring. This year inventory actually rose in February and internal numbers we’re tracking in March show they’ve risen slightly again.

Fort Myers Cape Coral Florida real estate market single family home inventory

This may be a sign that sellers have been a little too ambitious pricing their home and buyers have backed off bidding up prices. Prices typically peak in season then level off or decline a little bit the rest of the year. This is because most of the higher priced sales occur when we have the most visitors, but if that trend is peaking it will be interesting to see where the market heads from here.

New pending sales in February are down 10.6% from last year. New listings are up 5.4% over last year. So we have increasing inventory and declining pending sales in the height of season. We’ll be tracking March numbers very carefully. It’s still possible March and April could be great as Easter is late this year but the pending numbers we’re looking at don’t bear that out plus we see rising inventory.

Fort Myers real estate market new pending sales and Cape Coral, Estero, Fort Myers Beach single family

Prices did rise in February up to a median price of $185,000 from $180,000 in January. Average prices rose from $301,035 in January to $311,536

Has the market peaked? Markets rarely stay constant. It’s possible the market is taking a break until it figures out where it wants to go. Properties in the $250,000 or less range are still flying off the market. Homes priced higher than $400,000 really need to make sure they’re priced competitively in the market as inventory begins to build the higher the price.

Interest rates are rising again and it has put pressure on buyers. We just received some good news on flood insurance which will help the SW Florida real estate market compared to what we could have seen had the President not signed HR 3370 into law this week. New buyers will receive the same flood rates as existing homeowners do. Rates may still climb, but there are caps to how much and how fast, and before the new law was signed, there was no grandfather clause when a purchaser bought a property. This should provide some stability to costs for buyers which does affect their purchasing power.

We’ve had some excellent weather down here and the weather up North has been dreadful. 2014 might be the year many will vacation down here and put plans into place to move here in the coming months. A few companies are also bringing jobs to SW Florida in the next few years. If the economy improves, our real estate market has more room to grow. If it doesn’t, our market may stagnate and remain at these levels. Like I said, the market rarely stands still. Forces affect the real estate market.

Rising interest rates affect it negatively. Jobs and the economy do affect the market as well. We’re not sounding the alarm that we’re at risk of a downturn. We are saying we’re watching the numbers and we have a few things to keep our eye on going forward. The continued trend of rising prices may still occur, or it may subside and take a breather.  If your plans depend on one outcome or the other this is information that may be useful to you.

Nobody knows where the market is going exactly, or exactly when it will get there. If you’ve got a property to sell, give us a call and we’ll guide you through the market. If you’re a buyer, it pays to know what areas are hot and where inventory is building. We have the information. Let it work for you. 239-489-4042 or search the MLS at www.swfloridamls.Topagent.com

Good luck and Happy Selling/Buying!

If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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Buyer Specialist Fort Myers real estateThe Ellis Team is growing once again.  We are proud to announce than Dan Goczeski has joined our team as a buyer specialist. Dan was our Customer Care Specialist and Listing Coordinator up until last week, and we’re certainly going to miss him in that position.  Dan has always had a passion for helping people and he certainly went the extra mile in his role at the Ellis Team.

Dan has been a resident in Fort Myers for the past 30 years and is very knowledgeable about the area.  He has witnesses first-hand what SW Florida has grown into today and he looks forward to helping others find their piece of paradise too.  Dan has an extensive professional history from being a licensed financial advisor to a General Contractor in SW Florida. Dan has worked with clients in many fields, but customer satisfaction was always his top priority.  All of these qualities are what makes Dan uniquely qualified to find just the right property for you.

Dan saw how many buyer leads were coming into the team and it caused him to think about becoming a Realtor in SW Florida.  He’s always been in a position advising clients in the building and financial services sectors, but he developed a sense of helping others in real estate through his experiences with the Ellis Team at RE/MAX.  Once he saw how we help so many people it made an impact on him and he wanted in.

So it is with welcome arms we welcome Dan Goczeski to our team of buyer Specialists.  Congratulations!
If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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Each day we talk to customers that want to move to SW Florida to enjoy our year round sunshine and all we have to offer, like boating, fishing, shelling, golf, tennis, and more.  Often times customers find themselves buying expensive real estate on a golf course or waterfront homes with a dock in the backyard.

Freedom Boat Club Fort Myers Beach Carefree Boat Club Fort Myers

Fun For the Whole Family

Some potential buyers dream about buying in SW Florida but are just shy of having enough money to buy that expensive golf course home or waterfront property without exhausting too many reserves to pull it off, so they do nothing and give up.

If buyers knew of cost saving alternatives to enjoy the SW Florida lifestyle we believe many would act, so we looked into affordable boating and found some answers.

Boat club costs versus owning a boat in SW Florida

You’ll see many ads for boat clubs on TV and in the newspaper and there are all kinds from local clubs to national companies.  We decided to focus on national companies because we’ve seen some local companies close shop leaving their customers out in the wind.  National companies may be more secure and offer ways to enjoy boating while traveling as well.

We focused on the two best known national companies to us, Freedom Boat Club and Carefree. Both have local and national locations and costs vary by location.  Each club works similarly in many aspects in that there is a buy-in and a monthly cost.  Freedom Boat Club has some seasonal options in addition to the yearly plans, so you can save money if you only want to use a boat during certain months.

Carefree Boat Club has the lowest buy-in at $3,500 with a 5 year rate lock and $4,500 with a 3 year rate lock. Freedom Boat Club has lower monthly fees and a $5,500 buy-in and the rate is locked in for life.

Carefree Boat club advertises that members save 40-60% compared to owning their own boat.  Freedom Boat Club provided a chart that compares the cost buying a new boat and maintaining for 3 years versus being a boat club member and saving for 3 years.  There is no doubt joining a boat club is more cost effective.

You do give up the convenience of having your boat in your back yard and using it anytime you want, but both boat clubs agree that availability is plentiful because they keep their membership numbers at certain ratios.  As they increase members they add more boats to the fleet.

Gone are the days of paying for insurance, towing services, costly maintenance,  boat payments, storage if you dry dock it or rent a slip, tax, title, and licensing, and all the headaches of owning a boat.  Don’t forget to mention the cost of selling and buying newer boats as time goes on.

For a one-time investment and low monthly fees you can have it all, and save on real estate too.  The hard core boater or fisherman will probably not be attracted to such an idea, but the casual boater who would like to enjoy the water without all the cost and headache of boat ownership will be attracted.

Snowbirds from up north who are casual boaters will be too as they won’t have to tie up hundred’s of thousand’s of dollars in expensive waterfront property just to house that boat that will also cost them.

There is a saying that goes, “The two best days in a man’s life is the day he buys a boat and the day he sells it.”  Not sure why it wouldn’t apply to women too.

By joining a boat club you take away that last day where you’re relieved to sell the boat because it cost you bunches to keep it.  Now you have an affordable alternative.

Whether you need to look for an expensive waterfront home or condo, or a more laid back parcel you can retire in, Always Call the Ellis Team at RE/MAX Realty Group 239-489-4042

Good luck, and Happy Boating, no matter how you get out there!

If you’re considering buying or selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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The beautiful thing about advertising is that you’re free to choose which venues work for you.  Some people complain that newspaper advertising is dead and costly, so they quit years ago.  Others complain that Yellow Pages are dead and costly, so they quit that too.  Many brokers are in a fight to get their website ranked as highly as possible to avoid paying advertising.

Search MLS SW Florida real estate Fort Myers

We believe getting your website ranked highly is fantastic, and we’ve strived for that for years with good results.  In fact, we’re changing over our website right now in hopes it will achieve even higher rankings.  Mostly we want it to work for the consumer.  You can check on the progress at www.Topagent.com 

Online Advertising Report for CNN USA Today New York Times Search MLS Fort Myers

While getting ranked is important, search engines are adding more paid content to their front page, effectively squeezing out the free search results.  There are fewer and fewer spots left on front pages eaten up by paid advertising.

For those that believe newspaper advertising is dead, we can look no further than 2 weeks ago.  I wrote an article entitled “Thinking of Selling” That weekend we had over 130 sellers sign in to our website to find out the value of their home.  That’s quite a response.

People believe we’re foolish to take out full page ads in the Yellow Pages.  Yet each week we receive calls from buyers and sellers from the Yellow Pages.  Some are visiting in hotel rooms.  Others still use it at home.  The real advantage may be the online component of Yellow Pages.  Dex is a large advertiser that gets ranked on the first page of Google and Bing.  If you’re an advertiser in print, you’re an advertiser online.

The same goes with the Newspaper.  You’re not just advertising here locally as Gannett covers many papers across the US.

Our advertising philosophy can best be described as “Cornering the Market.” We use print, TV, Internet, radio, mail outs, etc.

The Ellis Team advertises our listings online in sites like USA Today, CNN, Trulia, New York Times, Fox News, and many more.  Relying on search engines is great if you’re looking to pick up a few buyers here and there on the cheap, but if you really want to market your seller’s property it’s worth spending money to reach buyers everywhere.

Advertising isn’t expensive if it works.  The newspaper still works.  It costs money, but if you’re consistent and don’t try to cram too much into a small ad it’s effective.  Yellow Pages work.  Radio, TV, Internet; they all work.  The trick is learning what’s effective.  Certain ads work.  You can’t blame the advertising medium if you post a crappy ad and nobody calls.

So when you hear an agent say they don’t advertise in the newspaper, or Yellow Pages, or whatever because it costs too much, ask yourself this question “If I buy a cheap cup of coffee and it tastes bad, did I really save anything by buying cheap coffee?”

When you’re interviewing real estate agents you have to ask pointed questions about where your home will be advertised and how often.  It’s not rude.  It’s your home and you’re paying the commission.  If the commission includes advertising it pays to find out how much exposure your home will have versus other brokers.  Many sellers assume all agents are the same when in reality brokers advertise differently.  The brokers who advertise more may be better negotiators too because they’re spending more money on your home and they need to be.

If you have a home you’re considering selling in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Ft Myers Beach or anywhere in Lee County Florida, give us a call. 239-489-4042 or visit our website www.Topagent.com

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It’s season again and it’s not uncommon for listings to rise during season which is usually a good thing except for those sellers that decide to “Test” the market.  There’s an old saying that goes “If your home is over the market it isn’t really on the market.”

Fort Myers Cape Coral SW Florida real estate seller's perception versus reality

Sellers overprice homes in all kinds of markets; good, bad, and sideways.  Overpricing is nothing new, but it seems to be gathering steam these days as sellers read headlines that the market is improving and prices are on the rise.

It is true, the market has continued to heal itself, and prices have been rising for many homes.  Some price points have a shortage of homes on the market while some price points have as much as 3 year supply.

The other day I noticed the following post on Facebook from a Bonita Springs agent who I’m friends with “Well, I see we’re back to listing properties based on list prices, not sales prices again.”  Several local SW Florida agents chimed in and agreed.

Personally I’ve been on dozens of listing appointments in the past several months.  Some we’ve taken and many we have not.  Some sellers are interviewing as many as 8 agents trying to get an agent that will agree with their price.

I’ve gone back and tracked several of the listings where we recommended a true market price and the seller chose to list with another agent at a much higher than market price.  Some have even listed just slightly higher than market and they all have one thing in common.  Their homes are still on the market.  They have not sold, and they will not sell because they are over-priced.

Oh, sellers can justify about anything.  Perhaps the Germans or the Canadians will come and fall in love with it and buy it.  We do extensive marketing to foreign buyers but one thing I can tell you is they research the market and don’t want to overpay either.  Imagine if you were traveling to another country, or even another state.  You’d research the market before you felt comfortable buying wouldn’t you?  Germans, Canadians, and Snow Birds from here in the States do the same thing.  Nobody wants to overpay.  They don’t care how much you need for the property, only what it’s worth.

Pricing your home correctly is only part of the battle.  So much more goes into effectively selling and successfully closing the sale.  Many owners and agents can get the contract, but closing it is another story.  This is where the real expertise comes in.  Notwithstanding this fact, overpricing the home negates the experience it takes to close a sale because you rarely even get that chance.

And if you are lucky enough to over-price and find a buyer, the appraisal will trip you up when the property doesn’t appraise.  Even many cash buyers are putting in contingencies that property must appraise.

A lot of sellers like to overprice in season then get serious when many of the high end buyers go home.  Why would you want to do that?  Again, if you’re over the market you’re not really on the market.  Why not have your home on the market when the most higher end buyers are here?

Sure, many of these seasonal buyers come back and visit in the summer, but some buy on impulse while they’re enjoying the weather and good times here as well.  Especially when they see how bad the weather is up North.

Sellers don’t like when buyers have erroneous perceptions about the market.  Buyers don’t get what they want when that happens and the seller just sells to a buyer with correct perceptions.  The same is true for sellers.  If you have erroneous perceptions, buyers will pass you by and work with a seller that perceives the market correctly.

Agents don’t control prices, the market does.  I don’t care if prices go up $10,000 or $20,000.  I can’t.  It’s my job to research and interpret the market for our clients so they can be successful.  I can’t make the market anything it’s not.  If I could, I’d start with my own property.

If you’re thinking of selling, give us a call and we’ll work with you to get the best price.  You might find other agents who will list it higher, but ask yourself this question, “Am I looking to sell my property or just list it and waste my time?”

All those other listings we walked away from are still on the market.  Our listings are selling. Things that make you go hmmm.  Call us at 239-489-4042 or stop by our office at 7910 Summerlin Lakes Dr Fort Myers, FL 33907

 

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