Agents must get real in a buyer's market

The days of getting away with inflated selling prices for property are “well and truly over”, according to one prominent industry figure.

RE/MAX Western Australia managing director Geoff Baldwin said agents must pay more attention to pricing in a market favouring buyers – such as WA's, where the number of listings has doubled from this time last year. In a crowded market, only properties with a realistic price tag will attract attention, he said.

“The days of coming up with a dream price, then adding on another 10 per cent, are well and truly over. Today’s buyer is much more informed and simply does not have the time to be deciphering over-priced properties,” Mr Baldwin said.

“It is a fact that most people are influenced by emotions when buying a property. However, they cannot become emotionally attached to a home if they never get to see it, and over-pricing is a sure way to restrict inquiry, viewings, and to stale a listing to the market.”

Mr Baldwin added that it's wrong to assume that vendors can remedy the situation by bringing down a price over time, because buyers shy away from properties that linger on the market.

“The records show, properties that sell within the first 30 days of coming to the market invariably sell for a higher price than those on the market for longer periods of time,” he said.

Mr Baldwin said that despite the weakening market, buyers will still be prepared to pay well for properties that are priced and marketed correctly.

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