Study Finds Homeowners Having Trouble Accepting Fallen Values

The New York Times reported on Tuesday that, according to a recent study by Zillow, homeowners are having trouble accepting how much their property’s value has fallen in the years post-real estate bubble burst.

The Zillow study found:

Current sellers who bought their homes in 2007 or later, an analysis of the site’s home listings shows, are overpricing their properties by an average of 14 percent.

Sellers who bought their houses before the bubble, and those who bought during the big run-up in home values, also are overpricing their homes, but not by as much. Those who bought before 2002 are pricing their homes roughly 12 percent over market value

One explanation offered by the study suggests that many sellers who purchased their homes post-2008  feel that they were able to avoid for the most part, the damage done to the housing market, and thus tend to overprice their homes as a result.   Warns, Stan Humphries, Zillow’s chief economist, warns:

Traditionally, people tend to overprice their homes a bit anyway, to allow room for negotiation. But unrealistic overpricing in the current environment means properties stagnate.

One of the overpricing downfalls sellers often make when pricing their home is taking into consideration how much they paid for the home and how much they owe.  This practice does not take into consideration present market conditions, and the market is what determines interest from potential buyers.  As Humphries points out, “The buyer doesn’t care what you paid or what your mortgage is.”

What should you consider when pricing your home?  Sellers should focus mainly on what comparable properties are selling and asking for in your neighborhood.

Full article available here.

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Sellers Q and A: Making your Home Market Ready

For a lot of people, there’s a lot to consider before and after making the decision to list their home or condo. Here’s a question we hear all the time from people all the time:


We will be selling our home sometime this year and are in the process of gathering information regarding what we should and should not do to our home to make it market ready.  I guess what I’m asking would be what improvements should we make to get the biggest bang for our buck? I love watching all the television shows about redoing your home but my budget doesn’t allow for too much of a makeover.


The first thing we would tell you is “the way you live in a home is not the way you sell your home.”  The two words you will hear us repeat over and over when we meet a potential listing client are “de-clutter” and “de-personalize.”  Here is a room by room guide of little or no cost improvements for you.

Curb Appeal:

This is the most important whether you’re in a single family home or a condominium.  During the walk to the front door and the sometimes awkward “finding of the key” by the Realtor, it’s important that everything look perfect.  This is where you put your money into plants whether in pots or in the ground.  This is the first impression the buyer will develop of your home and if it doesn’t look good, you may have already lost the buyer.

Living Room:

Remove some furniture then remove some more.  Everything you take out makes it seem larger.  Also, get rid of personal photos and keep surfaces clean.  We like to use the rule of three which means no more than three items on any surface.



Push the headboard to the far wall so buyers can see the top of the headboard when they enter the room which makes the room seem larger.  Buy new bedding and keep it simple—no big fancy designers.  In photos we don’t want the bed to stand out too much.


Get rid of anything dated such as brass cabinet handles and 80s light fixtures.  The bathroom should be spotless so a fresh coat of paint might be in order.  Buy new towels and bath mats.  Lock up and hide all prescription drugs.


Ditch refrigerator magnets.  The counters should be clean and appliance free.  A cheap way to update a kitchen is with new hardware.


Clean and organize them.  After you do that, take another third of your stuff and stash it elsewhere.  It will make your closets appear much roomier.


It should be neutral but that doesn’t mean you should paint every wall beige.  Pick warm muted colors.


Hope some of these tricks help you without spending too much money!