5 Things Tahoe homeowners should consider when pricing their homes

If you are like most shoppers, you probably have a rough idea of the average cost of consumer items and could take a pretty accurate guess at the price of most goods – but home prices can be incredibly hard to determine from first glance. Countless small factors and details are considered when properly and accurately pricing a home – after all, your home is unique, and so is your ideal buyer.

If you are considering selling your home, here is a list of five important things that you should consider when working with your local South Lake Tahoe real estate agent in order to come up with a realistic, advantageous and (hopefully) profitable price.

1. Spend time pouring over recent listings

The very first thing you should do is look at all recent sales (as well as active listings) of homes that are similar to yours in the South Lake Tahoe area (all while remembering that seemingly small differences – and even décor – can spell out a big difference in price). It is wise to only look as far back as three months; a lot can change in a short period of time on the market. As a hint – pending sales are often the most helpful.

2. Remember – all homes are unique!

You may look at another home that has a current pending sale online or in the newspaper and feel confident that it is the same as yours; after all, it is a 3000 square foot, 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom home on a half acre lot, so of course the prices should be the same, right? Wrong. The other home might have a bizarre lay out, an old, dated look and need extensive restoration. Or, it could be a true stunner with gorgeous interior decorating and a large, open floor plan – you just never know. This shows you that looking at comparable homes is helpful, but not 100% fool proof.

3. Your agent should be your number one resource

You have a lot of time, energy and happy memories invested in your home, and so it is natural that you will want to be heavily involved in the pricing process, but your real estate agent is the expert in the South Lake Tahoe market. Let them help you – work with them and rely on and trust their expertise, but always do some independent research so that you are in the know.


4. Small nuances in the market will affect price

Understand that each comparable home requires some serious research before calling it a “comp.” A house down the block may seem like it’s the same location as yours, but it could be in a different school or tax district, which will affect its value.

A smaller home may have sold for 20 percent more than yours, but maybe it was on a double lot that could be split, which makes it more valuable to a builder or developer.

If you see a nearby home with a price that seems off the mark, there must be a reason. Dig deeper to uncover what it is, and realize that the home may not, in fact, be a comparable one.

5. Go see homes for sale

Rarely does anyone decide to sell overnight. Once you realize a sale is in your future, get out and see what’s in your market. Check out open houses nearby to see the interiors for yourself.

Homes you see in January will likely be pending or closed by the time you list in April. Or they may still be on the market, which is an indication of poor pricing.

Check out the different floor plans, finishes and fixtures of nearby homes for sale, and consider whether each is more or less valuable than yours.

The best seller is the informed one. So don’t rely solely on your agent’s word about a particular house, or the market in general.