Vail Daily column: Don’t overprice your home |

Vail Daily column: Don’t overprice your home

Dear Joan,

My spouse and I are going to put our house on the market soon. I realize the market is not as strong as it once was, but I still want to ask as high a price as possible so that we will have money to buy another home with a large down payment. My wife thinks the price I want to ask is ridiculously high and she wants to ask a lower price to start with. This makes no sense to me because you cannot go up, but you can always come down on your asking price. And, if we get an offer, we can always come down on our price then. Can you settle this argument for us?

Dear Potential Seller,

I understand your thinking, and there were some years in this valley where your strategy worked for a lot of sellers. Now, I have to say, it is a totally different market. Not knowing what price your wife is suggesting, I am going to guess that she is near “market value” and you want to ask substantially above what similar houses in your community are selling for. If this is the case, she is instinctively going in the right direction to accomplish the sale of your home, for the highest possible price.

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Let me explain. In the real estate market we have in Eagle County right now, you will have the following issues if you price too high:

• You will have hardly any showings of your home. Buyers today will not even look at a property if they do not perceive it to be a very good value. The determination of very good value by buyers is mainly based on price.

• With zero, or very few showings, you will probably not receive any offers. Today’s buyers will just move on to a lower, more realistically priced home.

• If there are some showings, the buyers will actually be disappointed in what they see because these buyers have been looking at other homes in the price range where you have placed your home. They will have seen other homes that are priced correctly, and your home will not have the size, features and/or location that the other homes have. Therefore, if you lower your price later, they will only remember that when they looked at your home they were disappointed, so they are not likely to look again.

Your best strategy is to price your home correctly for today’s market, and then hold firm to your price. Almost all buyers will try an offer lower than your asking price. This is human nature. But, if you truly like the home and believe it is priced fairly, you can almost always come to an acceptable purchase price that works for both sides. Consult with your trusted, knowledgeable Realtor when you make your final decision about your list price and best of luck to you!

Joan Harned is an owner-broker for Keller Williams Mountain Properties and heads up Team Black Bear, her own real estate team. Harned has been selling real estate in Eagle County for 27 years, is a past chairman of the Vail Board of Realtors, past Realtor of the Year, past director on the Great Outdoors Colorado Board and a member of the Luxury and Land Institutes. Contact Harned with your real estate questions at, 970-337-7777 or

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