Ask a Realtor: Can overpricing a home hurt your chances to sell? (column) |

Ask a Realtor: Can overpricing a home hurt your chances to sell? (column)

Joan Harned
Ask a Realtor
Joan Harned Ask a Realtor

Dear Joan: I am in an argument with the agent we have picked to list our higher-end home. After making a list and showing him all of the “features and benefits” of our wonderful home, he has come up with a listing price that is $100,000 less than we think we want to sell it for. He is now telling us that we can “hurt” the sale of our home by coming out with an initial listing price that is way too high.

We, of course, do not think it is way too high, and we cannot see how it will hurt our sale and it might give us a chance to find who buyer that will pay our asking price, or close to it. Our agent said he will list it at whatever we say, but he is predicting few showings and no offers at this price. Not a great start. Won’t buyers just go ahead and offer what they think it is worth, and then we will know if we are right, or he is closer to right?

— Seeing Dollar Signs

Dear Seeing Dollar Signs: Yes, your Realtor is correct about the theory, and no, you are not any different then most sellers. Let me explain.

First of all, your home, seen through your eyes, can be a lot different than any other person’s eyes. Your Realtor has hopefully seen hundreds of homes and can look with a more objective perspective. And yes, if the property looks overpriced from the rest of the market by location, quality, price per square foot and condition, then the buyers will pass it by when they look online.

If they do come to look, and it does not match up to other homes in the price range that you have picked, they will move on and it will be very difficult to get them back. Why, you may ask? Because all they remember is that they already looked at that home and were disappointed.

Also, since all searchers are computer-generated these days, if you are above the price range the buyer or Realtor put in for their search, then your property will never show up. Therefore, most of us believe it is better to price realistically for the current market and then hold quite firm to your list price. This strategy has proven to be much more successful then floating out a big number and hoping someone will see through the haze and make you an offer substantially lower.

Of course everything is possible, but the percentages of the chance of homes selling at an overpriced number are not good these days. Hopefully you have picked an expert who is giving you expert advice that might be worth listening to. Best of luck to you.

Joan Harned is an owner and 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. Contact Harned with your real estate questions at joan@team, 970-337-7777 or

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