Please read the answers to these frequently asked questions before contacting me with any suggestions. I may have already covered it with a nice, thought-out answer instead of the off-the-cuff one you'll get if you catch me on the spur of the moment.

I've tested just about everything, then bundled the best real estate techniques together. I try to become the best at those techniques. There are more techniques that are less effective than there are the are effective.  Simpler is better, less is more, that kind of thing. 

If you price your home right, offer a reasonable commission to the first Realtor who can sell it, no matter which company they're with, and make it easy to show, it'll sell.

I understand that these are not the answers most Realtors would give you. Please consider this chart before you form an opinion as to who's right: Close rates of various companies


Frequently Asked Questions - Sellers

Can you add more of the positives of how exclusive my neighborhood is as a "hidden gem", yet central to everything? Also, I have a huge garden tub shower combo.

    By setting high expectations you increase the chance that they'll be disappointed when they get there. Better to under-promise and over-deliver.  Your neighborhood is better than some and worse than others. Calling it a "hidden gem" will set expectations, then possibly disappoint, depending on what other neighborhoods they are looking at, or are used to.
One of the reasons my close rate is higher than other Realtors is because I don't do some of the silly things they do. Saying things like huge garden tub is a classic mistake. Your garden tub is the same size as everyone else's garden tub. All you do is make them disappointed when they see that in person. Let me do what you hired me to do.

Why did you leave schools blank on the listing?
    I leave schools blank because we don't want to be held responsible for changing school district boundaries.

"Master Bedroom Downstairs" in the listing seems confusing since home is a one storey home (ranch).
    "Master Bedroom Downstairs" is a check-off box that some Realtors will search by when their Buyer doesn‘t care how many stories there are. We don’t want them to rule our property out.

Will Price, Wright, and Dunn, Inc. “push” my home?  Do you work with buyers?
    We are a full service company, working with both Buyers AND Sellers. Good realtors don’t “push” anything, because they‘ve learned that it results in the buyer being “pushed” away - to a better realtor. Buyers want the best home for them. Realtors like me find it for them after they get pushed our way. I utilize the listings of ALL the realtors. If you want to “push” it yourself, here’s how:  list your home at an accurate price and offer a competitive fee. Realtors will sell yours rather than someone else’s. Why? Because it's easier than “pushing” over-priced product, and they get paid the same either way! 70% of homes for sale are overpriced. 

Don’t realtors make more money when they sell their own listings?
    A good realtor can do better than that.  If they pick up buyers from that listing, they generally want something that fits better. The realtor‘s better off selling them something that fits, rather than “pushing” a listing that doesn’t. Then they get the listing side of the original commission, as well as the buying side of whatever else they sell. So no one gets pushed away, two (or more) sales get made, and the realtor collects two (or more) “sides”, rather than none. Regardless of who sells them, accurately-priced homes sell, others don’t.

Extra Advertising
    If you want to pay for extra advertising we'll give it to you at our cost. It's expensive, though, and not particularly effective. If a home is priced right, it'll sell without extra advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it. Ads and public open houses are good vehicles for "for sale by owner"s. For realtors, however, they are simply inefficient ways to pick up generic buyers and sellers. People hardly ever buy the house they call on. It’s just not the right one for them. So most sales happen when the realtor they contact sells them another realtor’s listing from the MLS (every realtor’s inventory). If a home is priced right, it'll sell without advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it. MLS automatically puts you into Florida Living Network and Realtor.com, which are internet Broker ads. They become part of the "Search MLS" you see on almost every Realtor's web site. The residential real estate business is different than most businesses in that we all pool our inventory. More advertising doesn't increase a home's chances of selling. It simply increases the number of Buyer/Tire Kicker leads a particular Realtor gets.

Public Open House
 
  Open houses work 1% of the time. It’s a good opportunity to show strangers where everything is, though. If the home’s priced right it’ll sell without an open house. If it’s not priced right, it won’t sell, no matter how many open houses you have. Internet, signs, ads, and open houses attract general prospects who may buy something some day. They rarely sell the home advertised. I don't think you need this, but if you do, I charge $300 one week before the Broker's Open House.


Can I hold my own open house?
   Open houses work 1% of the time. If you, an unlicensed, untrained Seller say anything at all about the house, you and I can both be sued. You need to say, "I know nothing about the house, here's a flyer". It doesn't matter if you know the answer to the question or not. You should also not say anything like, "this is a nice house." It is really hard for most people to play as dumb as that.

Virtual Tour
   Virtual tours are OK, but interior still pictures usually look better. Besides, most buyers want to see the neighborhood in person before they even consider a home. I haven't priced this lately.

Broker’s Open House

   Broker's Open House is for realtors with a lot of extra time to kill looking at homes they'll never sell. Most realtors look in the MLS inventory, qualifying homes by their buyer's requirements. Sometimes they will preview a house that qualifies (after they've found it in MLS). I don't think you need this, but if you do, I charge $300 one week before the Broker's Open House.
 
Can the sign be placed on the grass strip closer to the street?
 
  It’s not allowed to be on the strip between the street and the sidewalk, even though that's the best place for it.

Your listing doesn't sound exciting.   Remember, this is not an ad, where you describe the benefits and put in buzz words. This is a listing, as is "a listing of the facts". The facts get put into a database. Then realtors pull from the database under at least 50 different formats. Many of them don't include remarks, just facts. The remarks are supposed to simply be facts that didn't fit into the check-off boxes. Some people get pretty eloquent, but in fact, the more flowery you make the facts, the more rinky-dink you sound. Example - your mechanic/technician pulls the manual for your car to see how many quarts of oil it holds. "5.2 quarts" is good. "5.2 glorious quarts" will just make him giggle.

Why is part of the description missing in the listing?
   That's because of the type of format I sent to you. There are at least 50 different formats a Realtor can pull, none of them complete, but rather specialized.

I can't understand in our modern world of email/internet why once you submit a "change" it is not posted immediately.
 
  Florida Living Net and Realtor.com are automated broker ads that are automatically uploaded at certain intervals known only to them. That's why I say to give it two weeks.

I talked to Realtor in our neighborhood. She had heard mine was sold so had stopped showing it. I told her it wasn't.
   Good thing we have 36,816 other realtors in the Mid-Florida Region to draw from. Your house shows in the computer as an active listing. Most realtors rely on that, not rumor, when deciding what to show.

Cars slow down and look at the house for sale across the street, but not at ours.
 
  They've probably been sent there by Realtors using MLS. That's where your buyer is most likely to come from. I get calls from signs, and have sold houses directly from signs. People see them. Most sales happen when a realtor pulls a listing that fits the buyer from the MLS. The MLS, the Multiple Listing Service, is every realtor’s inventory. The buyer originally contacted the realtor on a different listing which just didn't turn out to be the right one for them.  Shouldn't we have a flyer?
   House brochures, “your own web page”, and "Info tubes" containing the listing information actually work against you. People read them and find silly reasons to rule the home out. If they have to call the realtor on the sign, the realtor has a chance to qualify them and sell them the home. 
Or some other one. If a home is priced right, it'll sell without extra advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it. You tell us when it’s empty, we keep it filled. You pay $250 B&W/$500 color in front.

My home is vacant. What should I know?
 
  Make sure your home insurance agent knows that your home is vacant. I've heard that though it may make your premium go up, you may not be covered after a certain amount of time goes by with it being vacant.

After a Realtor showed my home, several of the vertical blinds on the sliding glass door were laying on the floor and the security bar was also out and laying on the floor on the other side of the room. This concerns me as presenting a neat and tidy house is important. Any ideas on how sloppy realtors can be mitigated in the future?
 
  You could check the house each day and report to me if there's a problem. I can look up the lockbox activity, see who was there and call them. The upside is that they'll be called on the carpet. The downside is that they may not be as eager to bring in an offer.

Feedback from Showings
   Some realtors give feedback and some don't. I don't mess around with feedback too much. It's mostly bull. I once had people say they didn't buy a really good waterfront house because of the kitchen sink color. If you believe that was the truth I've got a hedge fund for you. If the house is as repaired, stripped, and neutralized as possible, it's ready to go. The only feedback that matters is an offer.

We've dropped the price of the home, but Florida Living Net and Realtor.com are still at the old price.
   The price is correct in the "live" MLS system. MLS automatically puts you into Florida Living Network and Realtor.com, which are internet Broker ads. It can take up to two weeks.

What about re-financing the home?
 
  A couple of things:
     1) If you do refinance, give me a shot. I can have my guy call you.
     2) Once you start the refinance process, you'll have to take your house off the market. The lender won't lend otherwise.

I would like to know why people who’ve seen my home aren't biting.
 
  Some are not as serious as they told themselves they were, and have not bought anything. The rest have found a house they like better for the same price, or a house they like as much for a lower price. If a listing isn't sold within a couple of months, the price is too high. Period. There are almost no exceptions to this.

We've dropped the price of the home. Can you call the realtors who showed the house and let them know and interview them?
 
  They will know via the MLS system. I used to call and let people know the price had dropped. It never worked once. By this time the real buyers have found a house they like better for the same price, or a house they like as much for a lower price.  Would an added incentive to realtors help? i.e. $1000 for quick sale, 3 1/2 %, etc?   An added incentive to realtors probably wouldn't help. For the most part it will go unnoticed on short printouts, and other factors are more important. It’s more about price.

Why isn’t my home being shown?
   If it doesn't work it means one of these is wrong:
     1) The price is too high, or the commission you are offering to the buyer’s realtor is too low. If your price is too high, buyers will choose to see similar homes with lower prices rather than yours. By listing your home at an accurate price and offering a competitive fee, realtors will sell yours rather than someone else’s. Why? Because it's easier than selling over-priced product, and they get paid the same either way! 70% of homes for sale are overpriced.
     2) The home is not “show ready”. In order for the home to sell quickly and for top dollar, it needs to be repaired, stripped, neutralized. It's not your home any more, it's your product. The better the home presents itself, the more buyers will be interested in making an offer.
     3) The home is not easy to show. The more available you make your home for other Realtors to show, the more Realtors will be interested in selling your home. Don’t be in the home when it’s shown. It doesn’t matter that you know the property better than anyone else, because you’ll intimidate the Buyer just by being there. Let their Realtor tell them why yours beats the competition.


Any advice on pricing and showing?
   The three main factors that affect your home sale are price, availability & presentation, and incentive. Remember, it’s a competition. Yours is not the only house for sale. But the more you follow these guidelines, the better you will stack up. The average sale is simple to show, in good shape, and pays a competitive fee to the buyer’s realtor.
   You may get less for your home if you are there when it is shown, and if you deal directly with any inquiries.
   In the current slow real estate market a good plan is to start at just below the indicated value on the appraisal. At that price you will be competing against homes that are for the most part worth less than yours. Buyers will gravitate towards yours.   If your home is priced higher, you will be competing against homes that are worth more than yours. Buyers will gravitate towards them. The difference can be a longer sale for less money.
   If you don't get an offer within 30 days it generally means that buyers are bypassing your house to buy similar houses that are priced lower.
   I’ve noticed that when overpriced homes draw a buyer who is willing to overpay, the buyer generally wants some kind of odd concession from the seller to make up for it - like taking the home off the market for four months.

Is there a price that would move it immediately?

   The one I currently recommend, or lower.

What is your marketing plan? How and where do you target market buyers? Do you use professional photography and videography?
What kind of internet presence will my home have? Do you use any social media? How many leads do you get from various sources? How many of those leads turn into transactions?
   These questions are all asking the same thing. The question is basically two statements saying, "Please mislead me into thinking that you are a better marketer than the MLS system." and "Please tell me that you are more concerned with getting both sides of the commission than you are with getting my house sold." I won't be doing either of those. Price it right, make it easy to show, and hire a Realtor with a high close rate. Most of the time another Realtor will sell it through MLS before the listing Realtor even has a chance to develop a Buyer from scratch.
   Here's how MLS works - Your property goes into all the Realtors’ inventory. It’s the best marketing money can buy. Any realtor can sell it and get paid a commission. MLS automatically puts you into Realtor.com and most Realtor‘s web sites, as well as Trulia, Zillow, etc. - basically, any web site that let’s you “search the MLS” is advertising your home. 
   Realtors put their listings into the inventory, and offer a commission to any Realtor who can sell it. So any Realtor can sell any house, no matter who listed it. Most sales happen when a realtor pulls a listing that fits the buyer from the MLS. The buyer originally contacted the realtor on a different listing which just didn't turn out to be the right one for them. Ads and open houses attract general prospects who may buy something some day. They rarely sell the home advertised. If it’s priced right it’ll sell without these. If it’s not priced right, it won’t sell, no matter how much marketing you do. The competition will kill it.
   Here are some more marketing techniques that don't increase the chance of you house selling:
   Broker’s Open House - Broker's Open House is for realtors with a lot of extra time on their hands.  Most realtors who are busy will look in the MLS inventory, qualifying homes by their buyer's requirements. Sometimes they will preview a house that qualifies (after they've found it in MLS).
    Public Open House - Open houses work 1% of the time. It’s a good opportunity to show strangers where everything is, though. If the home’s priced right it’ll sell without an open house. If it’s not priced right, it won’t sell, no matter how many open houses you have. Internet, signs, ads, and open houses attract general prospects who may buy something some day. They rarely sell the home advertised.    Extra Advertising - If you want to pay for extra advertising we'll give it to you at our cost. It's expensive, though, and not particularly effective. If a home is priced right, it'll sell without extra advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it. Ads and public open houses are good vehicles for "for sale by owner"s. For realtors, however, they are simply inefficient ways to pick up generic buyers and sellers. People hardly ever buy the house they call on. It’s just not the right one for them. So most sales happen when the realtor they contact sells them another realtor’s listing from the MLS (every realtor’s inventory). If a home is priced right, it'll sell without advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it. MLS automatically puts you into Florida Living Network and Realtor.com, which are internet Broker ads. They become part of the "Search MLS" you see on almost every Realtor's web site. The residential real estate business is different than most businesses in that we all pool our inventory. More advertising doesn't increase a home's chances of selling. It simply increases the number of Buyer/Tire Kicker leads a particular Realtor gets.
   Virtual Tour - Virtual tours are OK, but interior still pictures usually look better. Besides, most buyers want to see the neighborhood in person before they even consider a home.
 
Please show me examples of printed flyers, cards, brochures, etc.
   House brochures, “your own web page”, and "Info tubes" containing the listing information actually work against you. People read them and find silly reasons to rule the home out. If they have to call the realtor on the sign, the realtor has a chance to qualify them and sell them the home. If a home is priced right, it'll sell without extra advertising. If it isn't priced right, no amount of advertising will sell it.

What sets you apart from other Realtors? What do you differently?
   I've tested just about everything, then bundled the best real estate techniques together. I try to become the best at those techniques. There are more techniques that are less effective than there are the are effective. Simpler is better, less is more, that kind of thing.
   If you price your home right, offer a reasonable commission to the first Realtor who can sell it, no matter which company they're with, and make it easy to show, it'll sell.

How long have you been in business?
   Since 1984.

How does your company compare to other companies? What is your market share? How many homes did you sell or list each year? Where were they?
   The first part of the question is about volume. It is meaningless. The Realtor with the most volume is not necessarily the best Realtor. I have no idea what our market share is. Coldwell Banker, with hundreds of agents, sold thousands. They have a much bigger market share. Yet Price, Wright, and Dunn is more effective. See that chart near the top of the page.
   The second part of the question is also meaningless, because we use the same techniques in a neighborhood we've been in a thousand times that we use in a neighborhood we've never even heard of. Here's a link to where we've sold: http://priceright.biz/Where.html

What is your niche market?
   People not in foreclosure or short sale situations who want to sell their home and buy another one in my area (West Central Florida) using the same Realtor for both.

How did you arrive at your recommended price?  What are the comparable properties used?
   We do a real market value appraisal for each listing. A few of the comparables used are on the appraisal report. More are in the file. The rest come from statistics.

How long do you anticipate my house will be on the market? Based on what?
   If it's priced right, is shown correctly, and offers a decent commission to Realtors in general, it won't be on the market long. the chart above shows our median days on the market.

What percentage of sales price to list price ratio do you think is average?
   It's about 2.5% according to MLS and my own experience. This is an example of a good MLS statistic, because there's no way to fake it. If a house starts off too high, it usually doesn't sell until the price is lowered to within 5% of where it ends up selling (market value).

How do you set a negotiation strategy?
   Price it within 5% of market value, and get the most you can for it. Hopefully you will have more than one offer so you can use one to get the other higher. Here are some negotiation tips for sellers:

    A weak Buyer (95% or more financing) is willing pay the most for a house, but has the least chance of actually closing. Sellers prefer a stronger Buyer.

    A strong Buyer (80% or less financing) has more houses available to him, so he doesn’t have to pay as much. Sellers prefer a stronger Buyer.

    A cash Buyer has all houses available to him, so he gets the best deal. 

    That’s why pricing is important. You want to get the most you can with a reasonable Buyer. That‘s all part of the pricing. "Price it Right and You're Done!"

    Whether appliances are included or excluded doesn’t affect the price much, but does affect how many Buyers will be interested in making an offer. If a ton of Buyers are looking at the house this won’t be a problem. If only a few are, it might be.

    The higher the deposit, the less money you’ll get for the house, but the more likely the sale will go through.

    Commission is like everything else. If you go for the lowest commission, you’re probably going to get the worst Realtor. You’ll be saving on commission while you get no offers, get stale on the market and eventually undersell while you keep paying carrying costs. It’s not worth saving 1% by losing 5% in lost revenue.

    If you go for the Realtor who gives you the highest value for the house, or offers no opinion at all, you’re going to end up with an overpriced house. Then it’ll get stale on the market and eventually undersell while you keep paying carrying costs.