Selling in a slow market

Hi folks,

Many vendors are noticing that in some areas the market is not yet picking up. Selling in a slow market means understanding more than at any other time the importance of timing in getting the highest price. What does this mean?

To understand how sales work, vendors need to think like purchasers for a moment. If you are a purchaser, a new listing is a cause for excitement. After all, a purchaser who has been hunting for weeks or sometimes months for the right house to buy is eager for a new possibility – the right house at the right price. Eager purchasers converge hopefully on the first few Open for Inspections held for any new listing and the property is more likely to attract an offer in the early stages of marketing than at any other time. Yet this is the time a vendor is least likely to take an offer seriously.

Most agents, in fact, say that the hardest sale to make is the one that comes along in the first days of marketing, especially if the vendors are inexperienced. Many vendors just don’t realise that offers will and should come early – if the price is right. Sadly, they think that selling early in the marketing program is inevitably selling cheap. They simply haven’t understood that the serious purchasers are the ones who have seen everything on the market and turned it down – except the new listings.

The longer a property is on the market at a given price, the more the sense of competition fizzles and the more likely subsequent purchasers are to feel they have plenty of time to make up their minds. As a result, the best time to sell a property is often the very time that vendors hesitate and hold out for something better further down the track. The buyers who make their offers at this stage are the ones who have done their homework and are ready to buy. By the third or fourth week of marketing, all these ‘ready’ purchasers have seen the property and moved onto the new listings of that week, and almost all the enquiry comes from people who are new to the market and will take weeks or months to do their homework and be ready to act.