Showings but no offer

Lots of Showings, Reduced Price, Still No Offers...What Can Be Done?

Small cute craftsman American house wth green and white.

Dave,

I have my house on the market since January 2, 2019. Lots of showings but the potential buyers do not stay long 5 or 10 minutes then they leave. My home needs masonry work in the basement and floors are sloping. My home is 100 years old but I sunk plenty of money into the house, new bathroom, new kitchen. I reduced the price by $15,000 and still no offers. The feedback is too small, sloping floors. I asked my listing agent if she knows any contractors as I want to unload my home asap. I want to relocate and I am not getting any offers at all. What can be done?

Linda     


Linda,

I am going to break this down almost line by line. There is a lot of meat on this bone, so let’s get right to it!  First, patience is the one thing this time of year requires. Remember that you listed in what is traditionally considered the slowest (from a sales perspective) time of year and it is always hard to interpret showing traffic and feedback so moving with a bit of caution might be prudent. “Lots of showings” is somewhat relative and can depend on your definition of “lots”, but nationwide statistics on the number of showings before you should have an offer is somewhere between 8 & 13 depending on the market, time of year, etc!  Clearly this is not an exact number or science, but it does provide one statistical guideline to have some guardrails that will help keep you on the road! Along that line, there really is no typical length of showings.

From years of experience I would say that the average showing is somewhere around 20 minutes, but keep in mind that is an average, meaning some look quicker and some take longer! As a Realtor, everyone loves the buyer who is a quick looker, but some people need to look in and under every nook and cranny, even if they know they are not interested! Much depends on how large the home is etc. I have seen statistics and studies over the years that indicate that a buyer will internally “know” if the house is a contender within a minute or two, which shows that the final determining factor has a lot to do with having a gut feeling. All that to say that 5-10 minutes is probably a bit light. I even wonder if they are there long enough to get to the basement to see the area in need of masonry work? 

Regardless of if they are making it to the basement or not they are bailing quickly and the reason is most likely the sloping floors. They should be aware of the size before they come to see and the fact that you have had showings tells me that the sloping floors are expediting their exit.
Empty House.jpg

Regardless of if they are making it to the basement or not they are bailing quickly and the reason is most likely the sloping floors. They should be aware of the size before they come to see and the fact that you have had showings tells me that the sloping floors are expediting their exit. These two issues are even outweighing your kitchen and bathroom updates, which I am sure makes it more disheartening.  Remember sometimes it takes patience to find the right butt for the saddle. Finding that butt can take longer when you have significant hurdles and a sloping floor would check the significant hurdle box. To overcome significant hurdles it generally takes one of three things, time, just the right buyer or price reduction(s).

Your price reduction of $15,000 is a significant move in the right direction. It’s not clear when you made the price reduction, but you need to give it at least 2-4 weeks to season and see if it brings any new buyers to the table. If this price change does not bring in serious new lookers then you will need to decide between time and money! Sounds like time is very important, so you may need to keep adjusting your price until you find the right value that makes accepting the sloping floors an attractive choice for a buyer. With every significant hurdle, there is a price that makes a buyer believe it is an acceptable risk. You will likely need to find that price if you need to sell asap. Your other option is to evaluate what needs to be done to correct the problem and get it fixed! This would significantly increase your buyer pool and appeal.

For your average buyer, the cost to correct sloping floors would loom large in the decision making process because fixing it would require cash they would likely choose to spend elsewhere and expertise that most don’t have. Fixing it would be a great option, depending on cost and timeline to correct. With every home sale there are two lines (price and time) that start off parallel and eventually meet. Adjusting your price is your quickest (notice I did necessarily say best) solution to speeding up the process! Sorry I don’t have a magic bullet, but these options should help you sort it out…best of luck!

Dave Kimbrough
The Kimbrough Team

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We've had 20 showings, but no offers. Should we hire a new agent?

Dave,

We have had our home for sale for nearly six months with no offers and approximately 20 showings. Our current contract with our real estate agent expires in a couple weeks and we are considering changing agents and going with a new agent and company, although we have enjoyed working with our current agent. We are currently weighing the pros and cons of making a change and are looking for some outside insight to help us make the right decision. Thanks for your help.

— Josh and Brenda, Grand Junction


Realtor Showing Hispanic Couple Around New Home

Josh and Brenda,

Many times this is a very hard decision to make, especially if you like your current agent. Let me be the first to say, there are times a new agent, new sign and new energy are needed, regardless of how much you may like your current agent and want to stay with him/her.

If you have been on the market for nearly six months, several during winter, and had 20 showings, I would say that your traffic has been pretty good (although that does depend on your price range). It does not sound to me that you can blame your agent for lack of traffic. If you have good traffic, but no offers, it does not directly mean you need a change of agent.

Listen, you hire a real estate agent to drive traffic to your home in the form of showings and it appears he/she has done a good job. Statistically speaking you should get an offer within 12 showings (this is just a guideline I use and a national statistic) and I have found over the years that it really is a pretty good measuring stick as to where my properties stack up in the market. I have found it to be a very good predictor of home pricing vs. the market and if we have had 12+ showings and no offer, it generally means it is time to start considering a price adjustment.

The good news is, you are getting showings, which means your agent must be doing a good job of marketing your home and that you are not likely very far off.

The good news is, you are getting showings, which means your agent must be doing a good job of marketing your home and that you are not likely very far off. You can most likely resolve the issue with a moderate price adjustment and scare up an offer fairly soon. If you were not getting showings, this would indicate that the price is probably considerably above market tolerances and will require at least one price reduction of significance.

I will say, there are times a listing just needs new energy and it really can make a difference by changing the agent and or company and pumping some new energy into the property and marketing of your home. It has happened to every agent — the listing that will not sell and you have no idea why — no matter how hard you try, no matter how hard you pray, no matter how hard you beg all the agents who have shown it, sometimes you have one that just will not sell. You will know when your agent has given up, you will not see any advertising, you never hear from them or their staff, your flier box will stay empty etc. You will know at a gut level if you need a change. But if you still enjoy working with them and feel they are doing a good job, stick with them and let them stay on the hunt for a buyer...as long as they are earning it!

Considering you are getting good traffic and you have enjoyed working with your agent, I would suggest you stick with them. I would also suggest you have an open and honest conversation about where you go from here and what the game plan is going to be moving forward to get your home sold. Remember, showings are what you hire your agent to produce! Showings lead to offers and unless there is a pricing or condition issue you should have probably received an offer by now. Best of luck — sounds like you have a good agent doing a good job

Dave Kimbrough
The Kimbrough Team - REMAX 4000 Inc.

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Numerous Showings, Great Price & Feedback, But No Offers...What Gives?

Dave,

Our house is priced right, it has received great feedback, great staging on the reviews and 19 showings in 2 weeks. No offers…what now?

Art, location withheld


Suburbia in Fort Langley, a historic village in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia

Art,

AWESOME question! First, hats off to your real estate agent…19 showings in 2 weeks during Christmas and New Year is incredible. You should really take a minute, if you have not already done so, and thank them for their work. I am honestly a little afraid to print this question as some of my clients may wonder what I am doing wrong and wonder why they are not getting 19 showings in 2 weeks. Generating traffic during that 2 week period is not easy! That being said, you have a couple options and some things to ponder.

It is clear from the traffic that your home shows well and is appealing to online home buyers, so you can feel confident that the online pictures are doing their job. It is also clear that your price must appear very reasonable, heck even a pretty good deal, or you would not have the revolving door syndrome that you are currently living through. I do wonder if you have had any 2nd showings? If you have, then that would change things a bit…for the better. It sounds like your feedback has been very good, bordering on complementary and that is typically a wonderful sign. From what limited information that has been provided, everything pretty much smells like roses and if EVERYTHING smells like roses you would have received a contract, right?

Statistically speaking a home seller should receive an offer after somewhere in the neighborhood of 10-12 showings, on average. I have always evaluated our listings using about 12 showings as the bar for an offer, but sometimes as few as 8 or as many as 15 depending on the feedback. From your feedback I would say you are right to be pondering your next step. I have heard this said, and I have since repeated it many times, you can control three things in real estate….condition, marketing and price. After those three things, there is not much you can control in the home selling process so I would do my best to focus on those three things and let everything else sort itself out. It sounds like your home is being marketed properly or you would not have had 19 showings. Your home must be in good condition or you would be hearing things like “deferred maintenance”, “dirty”, “cluttered” or “needs a little TLC”. It is clear you are not hearing this, so the condition of your home must be very good. This leaves price as the only other thing you can control!

Ugh…the dreaded price discussion. I know…you said your house is priced right! Typically knowing what little you have told me I would battle you on this, but honestly with 19 showings in 2 weeks over Christmas and New Year, it must appear to the consumer to be “priced right” or they would not come like lemmings marching to the cliff. If it’s in good condition, it’s showing 1.5 times a day over the slowest 2 weeks of the year and is “priced right” why is it not selling? Actually that is a very good question! I would guess that you have a specific property feature, whether it be floor plan obsolescence, too many stairs, a busy road, un-kept/ugly neighbor, barking dogs from neighboring yards or whatever odd thing you can think of that is holding your home back and ultimately none of these are easily fixed. All of these items boil down to one of two things…price or patience.

At this juncture I would encourage guarded patience and if you have had one or two second showings, I would feel even better that you just need to find the right butt for the saddle.

At this juncture I would encourage guarded patience and if you have had one or two second showings, I would feel even better that you just need to find the right butt for the saddle. If it’s a busy road, then you need a buyer from a big city. If it’s barking dogs, you need a dog lover or someone hard of hearing.  If it’s too many stairs, you need people who see stairs as a fitness aid. I hope you see where I am going. You just need the right butt for your saddle and sometimes it just takes a little more time than we would anticipate or want. If you do not have the time or the patience, then adjust your price and get it sold!   My bet is you are not very far off and your buyer is closer than you may think. Hang in there a bit longer and I bet you find the perfect fit for your saddle.

Dave Kimbrough
The Kimbrough Team

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