By Kay Wilson-Bolton
A client who lives in Long Beach called to state that her neighbor reported that house sales in Ventura are brisk and that prices are rising. Therefore, she wanted to increase the price of her house.
In this market, it is important that decision makers, with the most to lose or gain, stay close to the source of information here on the ground in Ventura County.
When I asked my client how her neighbor knew that, she said that the neighbor’s uncle used to be in real estate and, “He said so”.
Well, let’s agree now that today’s information is the only reference for making good business decisions. REALTORS’® best sources of information come from indicators provided by our State and National Associations of REALTORS® and our Multiple Listing Services.
One of my clients just retired and is leaving the area for their new home in another state. Their home has been on the market for five months and admittedly, we have trailed it, for few knew what the ultimate market transition would be.
We have taken time to review in detail the daily hotsheet which reflects market changes, in real time, in their area.
Yesterday, there were four new listings ranging from $400,000 to $1,200,000. No real trend here. Seems like a normal market except the low number of new listings is a good thing.
There were nine price reductions and all nine were in the $450,000 to $600,000 price range; there were four properties that went “pending” or into escrow and all were homes and condos in the lower price range. There were three closings and all three were condos under $500,000.
As we reviewed the information, we realized that the market for their home is closer to $550,000 because the competition is headed in that direction—and so must we.
Some wish to paint this adjustment as healthy and “not all that bad.” Most would agree that it is healthy, but for many it is very painful.
Our State Association Economist expressed an opinion that the market is glutted with people who don’t need to sell. It is predicted that they will leave the market and wait for a better time.
This will leave only the serious sellers, lighten the inventory load, and reduce the competition in the marketplace which will help buyers realize that this is a good time to buy.
When making business decisions regarding pricing, incentives and market strategy, trust a REALTOR® first. Some of us may be aunts and uncles, but if we are still in the business, we have the information you need to make good business decisions.
Kay Wilson-Bolton is the owner of CENTURY 21 Buena Vista, and can be reached at 805.340.5025. Her website is http://www.readysetkay.com