Market Wise Q&A: Hot Market to Cooler Market ~ (What Happened to Protecting a Seller’s Interest?)

Pat Kapowich for the San Jose Mercury News

Q ~ When the real estate market was hot, properties had disclosure
packages and pictures online. Now that the market has cooled,
many listings have few or no pictures and inspections.
What happened??

A ~ Counter-intuitive, isn’t it? One would think that if sellers and/or
their licensee engaged in the process of selling a home, they
would bring everything to bear in order to make that sale happen.
Not so in this cooler market. Many sellers and their reps seem to
start with the attitude that the home might not sell at all.
Unfortunately, the sellers who could “save” hundreds of dollars in
inspections often wind up repeatedly reducing their list price
by the thousands. These sellers actually help the competing
fully-inspected homes sell first, for top dollar.

Seller inspections promote a sale, limit surprises and expensive
renegotiations, thus keeping the transaction together while avoiding
the likelihood of subsequent litigation.

Also, such short-sighted sellers usually hire licensees who won’t
be posting pictures, virtual tours or disclosure packages on the
internet. It’s not unusual for these licensees to then “work” open
houses repeatedly until their listing agreement period expires,
only to claim later, “I knew that property wouldn’t sell.”

Market Wise column
Saturday, February 9, 2008

Send questions to BrokerPat@Realtor.com