Steve Koerber's Old Blog

Remuera's house sold name since 1998 – 021864166

Coping with no price marketing

Posted by Steve Koerber on March 2, 2008

One of the biggest complaints I hear relates to properties being for sale with no price.  Auctions, tenders, by negotiation, expressions of interest(!), etc.

As a buyer, how do you navigate this confusing real estate world when no-one puts a price on a property?

Here’s a tip:  When you call the agent, never never ask “how much?”  And avoid asking “how much does the owner want?”

Instead, ask this question:  Do you think $500,000 (or x dollars)  is enough to buy this property?  If the answer is no, ask the question again using a different dollar figure.

The agent’s response will tell you a lot about how much the property is worth.  It’s the property’s “worth” or “value” that’s most important.  Not someone’s “want” figure.

I know this all sounds like a lot of beating-around-the-bush for no good reason.  The reason pricing can be such a daunting subject is that listing agents work for owners, not for buyers.  A listing agent’s greatest fear is that they tell you the owner wants $500,000 and you were the plumb uneducated buyer that was prepared to pay $550,000.

Just trying to help you!  Don’t blame the messenger!  Give it a try!


2 Responses to “Coping with no price marketing”

  1. Good tactic idea! Final price is result of battle between owner and seller and sometimes it’s pretty hard fight. We are dealing with both sides in realtors Toronto so I have seen it many times. But your tactic has also one drawback – if buyer sets starting “bid” too high, it’s a bit problem to lower it, because agent does see his opportunity. I believe there is no “right” tactic for both buyer and seller, both have to combine their negotiation skills.

  2. Steve Netwriter said

    Thanks Steve.

    Maybe one reason for the complaints is that one easy way to filter a huge list of properties into possible and not possible, is by price. Who wants to waste time investigating a property that’s in the wrong price bracket to what you are looking for ?

    I’ll add another thing I find annoying. The lack of sq m specified. The basic facts I look for are:
    1. Number of bedrooms
    2. Price
    3. Size.

    If there is no price, there should at least be a size, which would give me an idea of price 🙂


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