The house has been just sitting on the market. No one has come to see it in weeks. It's time to make a price adjustment and so I begin that dreadful conversation with the sellers.
"Well, we are not in a big hurry to sell. We are willing to wait for our price," they tell me.
UGH!!!! GROAN! And a few other words that I don't dare publish.
More than ever before, buyers are very educated to the real estate market. Often they will start poking around the Internet six month to a year before they are ready to make a purchase. Sometimes they know the inventory better than a realtor, going through each house, picture by picture, room by room. And if they are not walking around with all the latest real estate stats on the tip of their tongue, one of the first questions they will ask about a house that they like is 'how long has it been on the market?'
When a house is brand new on the market, buyers will ask "What will it take to purchase this house?" Once a house has been sitting on the market a month or more, buyers will ask "How low will the seller be willing to go?" and if the house goes stale after 6 months or so, buyers always ask 'What's wrong with it?' That is why I say nothing depreciates a house faster than a 'For Sale' sign.
Dropping the price is not an easy out for real estate agents. It usually sets off a list of tasks that include new ads, new flyers, e-mailing past showings, etc all to earn less commission. The only reason a real estate agents recommends a new price is that is what it is going to take to put up a 'SOLD' sign.