Virtual 'realty'
by Jacques Ambron
Apr 02, 2018 | 9266 views | 0 0 comments | 461 461 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jacques Ambron is executive director of sales for Halstead  Forest Hills LLC.
Jacques Ambron is executive director of sales for Halstead Forest Hills LLC.
Q. I went on one of the online real estate websites and saw that they valued my home pretty high. When I met a real estate agent, however, he told me my home was not worth that much. Who should I believe?

A. This issue comes up quite often, and both buyers and sellers refer to these “estimates” from online websites. Unfortunately, those websites are rarely if ever accurate.

First of all, they don’t take into account the condition of the property. Additionally, they don’t have accurate assessments of local markets. They use an algorithm to come up with a general estimate based on their own set of rules. In fact, if you look carefully on these websites, they actually include a disclaimer that their information is not entirely accurate.

So what is the solution to finding an accurate value for your home? Ask a local real estate agent to perform a CMA (comparative market analysis). Look at final selling prices for similar properties and prices for currently listed properties, as that will be your true competition.

Q. My real estate agent is requesting that I lower my asking price after three weeks. Is this a good idea? I thought keeping it higher would allow for more negotiating room.

A. You have to consider a few things in making this decision. First, what is the state of the market? If it’s a good market and your agent is doing their job, you should have a reasonable flow of buyers looking at your home.

If the agent isn’t giving you feedback, ask for it. If you are not seeing a steady flow, or if the feedback is that your price is too high, then it is time to discuss a reduction. The longer your home stays on the market, odds are the less you will get for it.

The reason is that when a property remains on the market for a long period, buyers wonder if there is a problem with the property. Most buyers now have access to online information as to days on the market. This would be a good time to review comparables with your agent to determine a better asking price.

Please send your real estate questions to
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