Open Lot - Great Traffic.
Another very encouraging sign happened to me last week. I have 2 oceanview lots listed temporarily at a giveaway price - $40,000 each. In this case, the owner has a fleeting opportunity to leverage into a great investment if they can generate some quick cash from the sale of these lots, so they dropped the price for 30 days. The price drop is not what I am calling an encouraging sign, it's the activity this price reduction has generated. Immediately, half a dozen inquiries fell into my lap. One was from a Portland broker who was sending her client out that afternoon and she asked if I could meet the client at the lots to give them a plat map, which I happily agreed to do. I drove up to the lot and waited a few minutes for the buyer to arrive. While I sat there in my car, 4 different cars drove up with people coming to look at these lots! I felt like I was holding an "open lot" instead of an open house. What's encouraging to me is that this proves there is a pool of prospective buyers out there in cyberspace, watching and keeping tabs on prices and new listings and these buyers are poised and ready to pounce the minute it makes sense to them.
Okay, what does this all mean to you?
Buyers: If you are among that pool "waiting for a sign", maybe the time to buy is NOW before you have to get in line with all the competing buyers once the market truly starts the upswing.
Sellers: This is the time for cutting to the chase. One of my builder clients called a month ago and told me he had read in a Builder Association newsletter that builders need to take the "Band-Aid Approach" in pricing their spec homes. The Band-Aid Approach was described as yanking it off quickly even though it may be painful. Just get it over with instead of prolonging the agony. Figure out your bottom line price and put it there. This builder client did just that, and within 2 weeks we had a sale pending. It's now closed and that owie is healing.
Multiple offers... Really!
Sign of a turnaround? I sure hope so. Last week there were competing offers on one of my listings. Yes, it's true. Okay, the listing price had been recently reduced, so that brought a surge of activity. Still, the actual experience of having competing offers was very encouraging to me after a long slow winter. Imagine being the buyer in a Buyer's market, and having the listing agent tell you there is another offer coming in. Would you believe the broker? It's easy to understand why the buyer might be incredulous, but in this case it was true. Remember, a professional Realtor has a duty to be truthful about such things, so if your broker tells you there is a competing offer -- believe it.