Q. What is the difference between the list price and the sales price of my home?
A. Home buyers and home seller have a few things in common. One is this: They both believe what they want to believe. Buyers believe that their dream house is located in their dream neighborhood and will cost exactly what they can afford to spend. On the other hand, sellers often believe list prices and sales prices are the same thing.
On average, the difference between the list price of a home and the sales price of a home is only about 6 percent. But many sellers think the list price is the price someone should pay for their home, and they often get insulated if the buyer offers anything less.
That kind of thinking can become an obstacle to a sale, especially if the seller has an over inflated view of his or her property’s value. If comparable homes in the neighborhood are selling for $100,000 and the seller arbitrarily decides to list his house for $150,000, it’s going to take some real magic to materialize a buyer willing to overpay by that much for home.
Overpricing a home is also a concern if the seller has misjudged the market. Getting a buyer to pay list, or near list, price for a home is easier to do during a seller’s market, where the demand for homes is greater than the number of properties available for purchase. The situation, however, is reversed in a buyer’s market. In this case, sellers often lower their prices to attract the few buyers who are shopping for a home.