Kris Berg reviewed the new Freakonomics movie, and how they criticize realtors for telling their clients to sell early.  Just like in their book, they refer to a study that realtors wait longer to sell their own personal residences, and get more money.  In the end, the one guy states that he’d rather wait to get his hypothetical extra $10,000 that magically comes one week later.

The movie makers are just picking on a common target, realtors.  If they really wanted to get some scoop, they’d include the rampant short-sale fraud or how realtor inexperience is costing the clients.  No, instead they keep the focus on a hypothetical case that sounds juicy – the reality is:

1. Today the listing agents are telling sellers to hold out, not dump and run.

2. Agents who over-price their own house are commonplace; it’s because they aren’t very good. 

3. Today you are either priced to sell, or priced to sit.  There isn’t magic that happens a week later.


Here are two studies that back up what we see on the street, from the

If you’re considering listing your house and you’re serious about selling, you’re better off being realistic right from the get-go.  This is according to a New Zealand housing analyst whose study of online buyer habits echoes one done this year in the United States.

Alistair Helm, chief executive of, concluded that a property receives four times as many views in the first week online as it does a week later. His company looked at 1,100 New Zealand properties during a six-week period in July and August.

Helm told the New Zealand Herald that the “most important people in the market” are serious buyers who are searching online every day, and they’re fully aware when a home that might meet their needs becomes available.

A few months ago, the online brokerage looked at traffic for listings in multiple markets.

The homes studied had gone on the market early this year and had been for sale at least 60 days, and the listings had been updated — had a price change or some other significant condition change — at least once. came to the same conclusion: Brand-new listings get four times as many online viewings in that initial week as they do immediately afterward.

If you’re fishing for an unrealistic price, you may be blowing it, the company said.

Author Mary Umberger writes for the Chicago Tribune.

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Jim the Realtor
Jim is a long-time local realtor who comments daily here on his blog, which began in September, 2005. Stick around!

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