Pricing the Property

Pricing a property is an interesting process, and I have been working on several in the last few months since the restrictions ended. These are in different places geographically, but thanks to the tools we have in our multiple listing service, and my tech background, I can offer an accurate price opinion.

Here is my process.

Considering that sellers often contact me weeks, months, and even years before the property sells, I first run a report using our “Realist” program. This report pulls all the public information on the property, and comes up with a range for the price, plus what it calls the RealAVM.

The RealAVM is generated by an algorithm, similar to the Zestimate and Redfin’s estimate.

Sometimes these are all in alignment, and other times they vary greatly.

Once in awhile a property owner will tell me that the number of bedrooms and bathrooms differ – this could be most likely because permits were not pulled for various additions. Thus, if a three-quarter bath was converted to a full bath (the addition of a bathtub) without a permit, this will not be reflected.

None of these programs “know” the condition of the house; the algorithms just work with like properties that have recently closed.

After pulling these numbers, I then go to our Comparative Market Analysis program in the Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

I’ll often run what I call a “macro view”; I’ll draw a line around the neighborhood and see how many sales there have been in general, and if there were many escalations or reductions. This just gives a feel for the demand in a particular place.

Then I hone down to the micro view and look for specific comparables.

Sometimes this can be easy – for example, I recently ran a report on split entries in neighborhoods of Marysville and Snohomish. These homes are generally somewhat uniform and often have three bedrooms up, and two large rooms below. Once in awhile there are conversions. They may differ in garage placement, and the size of the garages.

In the case of the Marysville neighborhood, the sales have been out of this world. One would almost think that every other home has gone on the market, and they all sold between 525k-600k. Huge demand, low supply, although the supply seems to have loosened up lately which could eventually bring prices down.

The same goes for Queen Anne, and although the home I have been working with there has fewer direct comparables, the neighborhood is in great demand. Queen Anne is close to South Lake Union, Amazon, Facebook and other tech companies.

Another home is a waterfront condominium; the complex and area has seen a lot of activity.

One property I’ve been working on is in an area that has no comparables what so ever, however, all the properties that sold around it went off the market for a week. If this property goes on the market at too high a price, it will sit, and probably end up selling for less than it would if it was properly priced.

Once this first analysis has been completed, I turn to condition. What is the condition of the roof, appliances, water heater, heating system? Does the house need new carpets, paint or other big ticket items? These all go into the hopper when I come up with a price range.

Considering this is a seller’s market, it’s been a feeding frenzy, as we say. I sat in on our Lake Union meeting today and heard that a couple of listings that came on this week in the core area had 50 groups at the open house.

It’s still a great time to sell, and while buying may be challenging, there are homes out there, and they seem to be on the increase.