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The Biggest, Most Shocking Home Selling Mistake


Blog by Sara Kalke | September 5th, 2013


I just represented a buyer in a transaction where an agent called me out on the sales comparables I sent along with our offer, justifying our offer price.  This is common practice among agents, so I was rather surprised at the response I received: an accusation that I was "doctoring" the comparables.

So I did what all good agents do; I asked the agent to put his money where is mouth was.  I asked for the "comparables" that proved mine were out to lunch.  What I received was so shocking I decided to write this blog article.  *Please note, I have generalized the examples and details as to not put anyone's reputation in question.

The house: detached two-storey, ~1,800 ft1, double detached garage, newer neighborhood

My comparables:

- 4 two-storey homes in the same neighborhood, sold within 6 months, 1,650-1,950 ft2, double detached garages, including one identical home built by the same builder
- $13,200 price range between highest and lowest sale comparables

"Their" comparables:

- 5 two-storey homes in the same neighborhood, sold within 6 months, 1,500 - 2,500 ft2, double detached AND attached garages, including the identical home built by the same builder
- $151,100 price range between highest and lowest sale comparables

Well, you see where this is going.  You have to compare apples to apples.  A 2,500 ft2 home with a double ATTACHED garage has no place in a set of comparables for a 1,600 ft2 home with a double DETACHED garage!  They are in totally different classes of homes!  My heart went out to the homeowners whose expectations were inflated; in the end, we walked.

The biggest, most shocking home selling mistake is not getting trained, experienced real estate advice!