'Buyers Judge Homes By How Many Days' on Market, Study Finds
Homes get 3.4 times more online views the day they are listed than they do the day the seller drops the price, according to a new report from tech-powered brokerage Redfin. The analysis looked at Redfin.com pageviews for more than 1.2 million listings and found the average number of views each listing received per day on the market, relative to the listing date and the date of the first price drop.
"It's critical to price your home to sell from the start," said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. "Fair or not, buyers judge a home by how many days it has been on the market. A home that has been on the market for more than a few weeks has a scarlet letter on it, and buyers will wonder why no one else wanted to buy it.
Dropping the price can help get your home onto the radar of some buyers who are searching for homes priced just below the original price, but you likely won't be able to regain the appeal of a newly listed home. "
A home for sale that is viewed by 100 buyers online in its first day receives an average of just 17 views per day after 30 days on the market. Dropping the price only boosts that to 29 views, and the bump only lasts a single day. The day after a price drop, the home's views fall back down to just 18 per day.
Online views of home listings drop off steeply after the first day, with half as many visits on day two and a quarter as many after a week on the market.
During the four-week period ending May 19, nearly a quarter (24.2 percent) of homes for sale had a price drop, up from 21 percent a year earlier, but down from the 30 percent record high posted last October. As home sellers this spring adjust to a market that's less favorable to them than it has been in years, it's increasingly important to make a home as appealing as possible to the most serious buyers, who often receive alerts when a home is first listed.
"Especially in a market where bidding wars are not the norm, it can be tempting for a seller to price their home a little high to avoid leaving money on the table," explained Seattle-based Redfin listing agent Dorothee Graham.
"If we have to drop the price, I'll run a new comparative market analysis so the seller can see how much similar homes nearby are listing and selling for. Then I offer to take them in person to tour those properties so they understand where their home should be priced."
"I also pull a list of everything available in that price range I'm recommending so they can see what else is out there, regardless of property type, size and condition, because this is how buyers are searching," continued Graham.
"We also keep in mind price intervals and how homebuyers tend to search on Redfin and other real estate sites. A seller might want to reduce their price by just $10,000 to $15,000, but I advise that this won't work unless it puts them in a different price bracket. When you do a price drop it has to be meaningful."