We’ve been hearing that it's a buyers' market for some time now, and even in the Silicon Valley we’re starting to hear about prices dropping. Which raises the question:  If you are a seller that needs to sell now, what should you do?  To answer this question let’s look at recent statistics for a local community.  As an example, let’s look at Sunnyvale, CA.  During the most recent 30 days, fifty-two (52) homes sold.  The highest priced home was 838 TICONDEROGA DR and lowest 1143 REED AV #A, priced $1,200,000 and $281,000 respectively.  As you can see that's a pretty big disparity in price.  Now, let’s take a deeper look at the other 50 homes:

Sunnyvale sales, new listing, current inventory and the absorbtion rate (*) by price band for the last 30 days:

Price Range

Total Closed Sales

New listings

Current Inventory

Months to Absorb existing Inventory

$200,000 - $300,000

3 6 8 2.67

$300,001 - $400,000

4 7 17 4.25

$400,001 - $500,000

12 19 43 3.58

$500,001 - $600,000

5 10 22 4.40

$600,001 - $700,000

8 16 34 4.25

$700,001 - $800,000

7 13 18 2.57

$800,001 - $900,000

5 12 18 3.60

$900,001 - $1,000,000

4 8 25 6.25

$1,000,001 +

3 24 38 12.67

At least in Sunnyvale, homes across the price spectrum are selling; however, as you can see the list price of the home directly influences the probability your home will sell. As the inventory is lower in the under $300,000 range and between $700,000 to $800,000 a seller has a 1 in 3 chance to sell.  However, if your price is over $1,000,000  now the chance of selling is 1 in 13.

So what do you do as a seller if you’re trying to sell a home and you need to sell it fast?  It’s simple – you need to present the value of your home compared to every other home in your price point.  What does this mean? A seller needs to understand they are not just selling their home, they are selling their home against every other home in their price spectrum.

The home needs to be ready to sell: Inspections should be done with major work corrected, it should be painted inside and out, you might even want to consider updating the kitchen and baths.  If the seller does not make these repairs, the seller needs to understand that it could mean that their home sits on the market while more attractively presented and priced homes go into contract.

So what does a seller do if they cannot make the repairs to bring their home up to current standards?  Unfortunately, the seller has only one option to make the home marketable in the current environment  - Lower the asking or list price.  However, by looking at the chart above, lowering the price just one price point still may not be enough to make the home sell.

However, all this shouldn't be interpreted to mean that all hope is lost.  It's simply important to remember that times have changed and you should enter the market as a seller who is fully prepared.  If you would like to discuss your particular situation feel free to contact us.  We have extensive experience helping sellers sell their home when others have failed. Contact StynesGroup for several unique ideas you may not have heard before.

(*)  Absorbtion rate  - is the number months it would take to sell the available inventory devided by the average units sold in the last 30 days.