Real estate is not something that people often think about, homeowners included. However, there comes a time every once in a while where every consumer is plunged back into the real estate world headfirst, whether it be out of need or interest, and with it comes all of the theories, hacks, assumptions, and horror stories. But fear not! Some of the most common ideas about real estate are myths. So, without further ado, here are 5 real estate myths and why they aren’t true.
All Real Estate Agents are the Same
Some consumers close their eyes and choose at random who they want to represent them and their home. What these consumers don’t know is that no two agents are the same. Similar to other professions like medicine or home repair, real estate agents have varying levels of success and different experiences with different kinds of clients. Also, the distinction between agents that work with buyers or sellers is a big one. Proper research about an agent that’s being considered for hire just might make or break a home sale.
Open Houses are Good for Sales
Logically, it would seem that open houses would result in better exposure and thereby increase the likelihood of a sale. However, that’s often not what some real estate agents use house sales for. Open houses can be used by agents to scout out and convert more clients that are looking for a home to purchase. Also, open houses can welcome seller competition that’s looking for ways to present their own home for sale, or even thieves who like what they see and decide to take it for themselves! When an agent presents the idea of an open house, it would be ideal to ask what their exact motivations behind that decision may be.
“For Sale by Owner” Saves Money
A common misconception about real estate is that it there’s simply no need for a real estate agent. If an owner can sell a home on their own, then why not take advantage of that? Well, though it is possible for a homeowner to sell their own home, it takes more effort and knowledge than one may think at first. The owner must know how to arrange for the house to be listed online, how to arrange for an inspection, and how to price the home properly. If any of these things are done improperly, it might result in the home selling for a much lower price than deserved or not selling at all. Once again, it’s probably best to do a lot of research before deciding whether this is the right play to make or not.
Zillow is the House Pricing Authority
Since Zillow is such a powerful online tool, it can frequently be viewed as the end-all-be-all authority on house pricing. This, however, is yet another myth. Zillow itself does not even make this claim. Zillow describes its Zestimates as only “starting points” for what a house may wind up costing. Also, Zillow does not explain context on their website, i.e. why one house costs much more than the other that’s only a few blocks away. Even the Zillow C.E.O., Richard Barton, said that his home wound up selling for up to 40% less than the Zestimate that was in place!
Homes Should be Priced for Negotiation
Pricing is a very delicate matter when it comes to real estate. Buyers are much more knowledgeable now because of all of the real estate resources that can be found online. If a home is priced too high by an owner, it may be overlooked by buyers and agents alike, and probably won’t even get listed. Though sellers may justify this by saying that this “weeds out people that aren’t interested,” the house may sit for a while before that happens, and if a house sits for more than a few weeks, the chances of it selling are astronomically lower. On the other hand, if priced too low, the negotiations before agreeing on a price may be overlooked completely or be very small. Realistic pricing results in realistic sales, so dramatic negotiations can be avoided entirely.
These are just a few myths of real estate! As always, if you have any questions do not hesitate to give me a call at (765) 744-9951!