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Three Factors to Sell Your House


Three Factors to Sell Your House

by Peter Porcelli

In today's real estate market, many sellers are going months without an offer, sometimes without showings, and are scratching their heads, wondering what it will take to sell their home. However, of those homes that are selling, the average time spent on the market is only sixty days!

Why are some houses selling fast, while others stagnate on the market? The answer is quite simple.

Three factors apply to selling anything, whether it is soap, office chairs, computers, peanut butter, or houses. It makes no difference if your house is made of stacked stone, with a gourmet kitchen and marbled bathrooms, or if it has a dirt floor and an outhouse; the sale is predicated upon price, condition and market exposure. Let's use the bar of soap analogy to look at each, individually:

Price: A surprise to many, the average American does not like to bargain or haggle. They would prefer to purchase items that are marked at what they believe to be a fair price. In today's competitive market, adding "negotiating room" when pricing may only serve to disadvantage the seller.

If there are 100 like-bars of soap on the shelf (all at slightly different prices), and 20 people buy a bar of soap per week, then 80 bars will go un-sold. If the shelves are once again stocked to 100 bars, and the demand remains 20 per week, then 80 bars will go un-sold again. If your's is one of the 80 un-sold bars, you will have to lower the price to attract a buyer; otherwise, another 20 bars will replace the ones sold, and your bar will most likely go un-sold again.

In real estate, the longer a home is on the market, the less attractive it becomes to buyers, and those offers received usually decrease over time. The best strategy is to price a home in line with the most recent, comparable sales.

Condition: The condition must match the price; it's the value for the dollar. If a bar of soap is the same as another, but has torn packaging, that bar of soap will not sell for the same price as the bar in the perfect wrapper. However, the bar in the ripped packaging may sell for the same price, if the packaging is replaced, or it may sell if the price is lowered to reflect the ripped package.

The same is true in real estate. Waiting for a "serious offer" before making repairs or updating a house is a bad strategy, and one that usually leads to months without showings or offers. Homeowners have two choices: 1) bring the condition up to meet the price or 2) bring the price down to match the condition. Typically, a seller will net more return and sell faster by bring the condition up.

Market Exposure: If no one knows a home is for sale, no one will buy it. A soap seller attracts buyers through advertising. In real estate, this is achieved through the MLS and lots of online marketing.

Today's buyer is looking online as much as six weeks prior to contacting an agent and will typically have a few homes picked out. Do not miss this important step of selling! The more exposure a home has, the more offers it will receive, thereby increasing the likelihood of getting full price.

Remember, three things sell a house: Price, Condition, and Wide Market Exposure. If your house isn't selling, one or more of these factors must be addressed. Most often, price is the culprit. The market will tell you if you get it right, for when you do, an offer will appear.

Peter Porcelli is Broker/Owner of Georgia Elite Realty, located in Kennesaw, GA, a suburb of Atlanta. He recently appeared in an episode of Flip That House on TLC. His keen interest in his business and his passion for sales coaching has made Peter a valued asset to both clients and agents. Visit his site:


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