Q: Several months ago, I made an offer on a duplex — an estate sale in Northeast Philly up for $200,000. My offer was not accepted so I moved on. I’ve since noticed that the property is still for sale but has been reduced to $175,000. Why didn’t they just take my offer? They would have made $10,000 more. I don’t get it.
A: Selling property can be an emotional process for many people. Sellers can be attached. People who are attached to a piece of real estate, or just attached to a particular number they have in mind, have a hard time detaching themselves from their interest in the property and making good decisions. Also, some people just don’t understand the marketplace in which they are selling.
Real estate is more than just the house and the land its attached to. It represents so much more for many people. In this case, you said it was an estate sale. This means that someone has died and there is usually someone grieving left to sell the property. It’s easy to see how they could feel emotionally connected. That could be why they didn’t take your offer.
Another other reason could be because they really wanted more money, or felt as though they could get more, for the property. They had it listed for $200,000 so perhaps they did not feel as though they could “give up” $10,000 when they felt entitled. There are many variables there that could apply.
Sometimes estates have several people involved in the sale who all need to be on the same page for a sale price. Now you’re talking multiple people involved in a decision making process, although, it could have easily just been one person who had the issue with your offer. One could feel emotionally about the value of the property or one could have been out of touch with the market.
Because they are feeling unsuccessful, they’ve now decided to make the price more attractive, and possibly more in line with the market prices. I think it’s safe to simply say they should have accepted your offer. But you can’t make sellers do something they don’t want to do. Some people just don’t “get it” until it’s too late.
Stacey McCarthy is a real estate agent with the McCarthy Group of Keller Williams. Her Real NEastate column appears every Wednesday on NEastPhilly.com. See others here. Read other NEast Philly columns here.