Think twice about price

Home sellers who stipulate a hard-and-fast limit below which they will not consider any offers on their property may end up losing out.

It may be tempting, says Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group, to instruct your agent to not even show you offers below your stipulated minimum, especially in view of the huge gains in property prices registered in the recent past.

"But sellers should keep in mind that the property market is in constant flux and there is currently a discernible trend of resistance to high asking prices."

Writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, he says buyers are concerned that rising oil prices could still drive up interest rates this year.

"Buyers are also increasingly value conscious and the banks are also being distinctly more cautious in lending."

Sellers should also be aware, says Everitt, that an initial offer slightly below their minimum could, in the hands of an experienced agent, become the starting point of negotiations that eventually lead to them actually achieving more than their minimum price.

"And, of course, price is not everything — sellers who have to relocate quickly may find a slightly lower, but unconditional, offer far better than a higher bid from a buyer who still has to obtain a home loan or sell his own property to make the deal happen."

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