Nothing causes more controversy in the residential home market than the question of the price at which a home should be brought to the market.

After deciding to sell, the seller obviously has to rely largely on the agents advice, but how does he know if the agents estimate is correct?

Shrewd sellers will always insist that the agent produces a complete up-to-date market report on how other, similar properties in the area have recently sold. ‘If he cannot do this you know at once that he is an amateur. The seller will then ‘if he is wise’ inspect the homes sold himself and assess how they compare with his.

Equally important, Check the agents recent track record. There are two questions to be asked here and they are both crucial: firstly, how many properties has the agent sold recently and secondly how close to the asking price were the final sales figures.

‘Certain agents attempt to gain mandates by suggesting unrealistically high sales prices and then later talk the seller into accepting a smaller offer because ‘the market has taken a downturn’.

In the current market most sellers are settling for an 8% differential between the selling price and the asking price. However, there are still cases where a property with exceptional features, or properties in growth areas, will achieve prices higher than the asking price.

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