Agent view: Launch price is key to successful campaign
As we look back over Quarter 1, the formula for launching a property for sale has been consistent. Effectively, if you're aiming to achieve a favourable result quickly, it is largely down to pricing.
There has been much discussion about a lack of supply on the market. However, with over 4,000 properties for sale in Dublin, and a healthy 26,000 properties nationwide, supply does not appear to be the issue. Some of these properties have been for sale for a long time, and are likely to remain for sale, as the original pricing is too high. It is therefore unlikely that they will be purchased as homes or investments because they don't represent value or the desired yield on investment.
Q1 has demonstrated that if the price is right, the property will attract keen interest from potential purchasers, and may bid up. This is the most likely route to achieving a bonus price, and sale, for the vendor. Launching a property is like launching any new product. Demand is high in the opening weeks when the property is "up in lights", however, if the price doesn't engage potential purchasers they move quickly on.
So how do you determine if the price is right? It is not the optimistic or the desirable figure that matters for the "launch", it's the realistic and dependable one. It is imperative that the preparation for the "premiere" attracts potential purchasers to view what may be their future home or investment for their pension. The critical business of appropriate pricing has been demonstrated on a number of occasions in Q1 where an overpriced margin of €30,000-€50,000 has proved a deterrent to drawing interest. The most recent comparable evidence, where available, must be used, as well as the advice of the professional, the agent, as to how to conduct the campaign. In our experience, when the vendor has followed this formula in Q1, a bonus price has been achieved.
A swift, exciting campaign, resulting in a bonus price, has to be coupled with preparation for the contract stage. The onus lies on the vendor to ensure that their solicitor has all the required information to produce a contract without delay. It is key to keep the momentum going from start to finish, from campaign to contract to completion.
Finally, it's not necessarily the size of the agent's database, all properties are now available to view online, but rather the three Ps - preparation, presentation and price.
Rowena Quinn is a managing partner at Hunters estate agents