As an agent of over 15 years, it’s still a real bug bear of mine when I see properties that have been on the market for some time, priced obviously too high.

Are agents valuing properties unrealistically high to win business? Or is it the owner with unrealistic expectations? As an agent I wouldn’t take on a property if I felt the owners wanted an unachievable price, it’s a waste of money and time.

Statistically the busiest day of page views for any marketed property is day one. So if you price high and attract loads of swipes, rather than viewing requests you’ve missed a golden opportunity.

If buyers think your expectations are too high, they are put off from even requesting a viewing.

Another statistic that is pertinent is that properties that achieve the best results do so within the first few weeks, and usually after attracting multiple offers from eager buyers.

Therefore you should always price to entice buyers. Yet, so many people choose an agent with a high valuation to ‘test’ the market, and ultimately try and fail to find a buyer and reduce their asking price. This is now a FAIL. Research was carried out by Which? Group a few years back. Properties that reduce their price sell for on average approximately £25,000 less than properties that find a buyer quickly.

So always price to entice. You want to create viewings, in abundance, set the scene by the way you arrange your viewings and make sure the environment when bids are received is tense. You want the buyers best offer under some duress, not a cheeky offer as they know there’s no other interest.

When I valued this property in Burrow Road, I could see several houses already on the market at £575,000 and £600,000 however these had been fully refurbished to a good standard. Some ad been on the market for almost two months, whilst one had been live since March. That property will not sell now without a substantial reduction.

3 bedroom End Terraced House for sale in Burrow Road SE22

The house we listed was in its original condition. Clean, but very dated in style.

The owner is elderly, and I’d taken her to see a retirement property which she loved, so I wanted a quick sale, but with the caveat that I needed a great result for her.

So I listed at offers in excess of £500,000, rather than list at £550,000 and accept offers.

The response was phenomenal, with over 120 viewing enquiries.

Clearly due to her age, and Covid, I wasn’t going to be able to get everyone in for a viewing, so we contacted the first enquirers, had a chat so we knew their buying position, and lined up two block viewing arrangements with just over 30 viewings booked.

Buyers were told to be on time otherwise they’d miss their slot and every viewer knew just how many people had enquired.

On the viewing dates there would usually be people hanging around waiting for their slot, so the anticipation was high.

After the two blocked viewings (4.5 hours in total), I’d received 8 offers.

Offers started at a little over the asking price to over 10% higher and I still had another 70 viewers who’d enquired. If there was no Covid it would have been an actual open day with well over 100 viewings!

It’s not easy talking to vendors to try and understand this concept, when so many other agents are pandering with suggestions to market at unrealistic sexy amounts. If I had a £1 for every vendor who’s ever said ‘but will people pay more than the asking price?’. Er, yes they will if they feel it’s worth more, and if there’s loads of competition, they’ll usually even offer more than they actually wanted to, as the determination to be successful usually takes over.

If you’ve tried and failed to find a buyer previously, or have been sitting on the market for some time, then perhaps trying a different way of selling your property will bring more success. It’s no wonder that auctions DO NOT price too high and reduce until there’s interest (which most agents partake in). They start bidding low, creating interest and bids and this drives the rice upwards. After all, everything in life has more value if its desired by many, much like the law of supply v’s demand.

Just for the record we achieved over £20k more than the result I’d expected based on the other houses on the market in the estate