How To Price Your Palos Verdes Home For Sale

Palos Verdes homes sellers often ask how to choose the correct list price for their home.  Below is an excellent article which answers this question:

How to Use Comparable Sales to Price Your Home

By: Carl Vogel  Published: August 5, 2010

Before you put your home up for sale, understand how the right comparable sales help you and your agent find the perfect price.

How much can you sell your home for? Probably about as much as the neighbors got, as long as the neighbors sold their house in recent memory and their home was just like your home.

Knowing how much homes similar to yours, called comparable sales (or in real estate lingo, comps), sold for gives you the best idea of the current estimated value of your home. The trick is finding sales that closely match yours.

What makes a good comparable sale?

Your best comparable sale is the same model as your house in the same subdivision—and it closed escrow last week. If you can’t find that, here are other factors that count:

Location: The closer to your house the better, but don’t just use any comparable sale within a mile radius. A good comparable sale is a house in your neighborhood, your subdivision, on the same type of street as your house, and in your school district.

Home type: Try to find comparable sales that are like your home in style, construction material, square footage, number of bedrooms and baths, basement (having one and whether it’s finished), finishes, and yard size.

Amenities and upgrades: Is the kitchen new? Does the comparable sale house have full A/C? Is there crown molding, a deck, or a pool? Does your community have the same amenities (pool, workout room, walking trails, etc.) and homeowners association fees?

Date of sale: You may want to use a comparable sale from two years ago when the market was high, but that won’t fly. Most buyers use government-guaranteed mortgages, and those lending programs say comparable sales can be no older than 90 days.

Sales sweeteners: Did the comparable-sale sellers give the buyers downpayment assistance, closing costs, or a free television? You have to reduce the value of any comparable sale to account for any deal sweeteners.

Agents can help adjust price based on insider insights

Even if you live in a subdivision, your home will always be different from your neighbors’. Evaluating those differences—like the fact that your home has one more bedroom than the comparables or a basement office—is one of the ways real estate agents add value.

An active agent has been inside a lot of homes in your neighborhood and knows all sorts of details about comparable sales. She has read the comments the selling agent put into the MLS, seen the ugly wallpaper, and heard what other REALTORS®, lenders, closing agents, and appraisers said about the comparable sale.

More ways to pick a home listing price

If you’re still having trouble picking out a listing price for your home, look at the current competition. Ask your real estate agent to be honest about your home and the other homes on the market (and then listen to her without taking the criticism personally).

Next, put your comparable sales into two piles: more expensive and less expensive. What makes your home more valuable than the cheaper comparable sales and less valuable than the pricier comparable sales?

Are foreclosures and short sales comparables?

If one or more of your comparable sales was a foreclosed home or a short sale (a home that sold for less money than the owners owed on the mortgage), ask your real estate agent how to treat those comps.

A foreclosed home is usually in poor condition because owners who can’t pay their mortgage can’t afford to pay for upkeep. Your home is in great shape, so the foreclosure should be priced lower than your home.

Short sales are typically in good condition, although they are still distressed sales. The owners usually have to sell because they’re divorcing, or their employer is moving them to Kansas.

How much short sales are discounted from their market value varies among local markets. The average short-sale home in Omaha in recent years was discounted by 8.5%, according to a University of Nebraska at Omaha study. In suburban Washington, D.C., sellers typically discount short-sale homes by 3% to 5% to get them quickly sold, real estate agents report. In other markets, sellers price short sales the same as other homes in the neighborhood.

So you have to rely on your real estate agent’s knowledge of the local market to use a short sale as a comparable sale.

Carl Vogel, a freelance writer and former editor of The Neighborhood Works magazine, lives in a home in Chicago that is not typical of those nearby, so he appreciates a savvy comp.

“Visit for more articles like this. Reprinted from with permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.”

Palos Verdes Homes Prices Up First Half 2018

Palos Verdes Homes Prices Up First Half 2018

Photo of Palos Verdes gatehouse courtesy of Arvin Design

Palos Verdes real estate prices increased for the first half of 2018 with increases in average price per square foot and average sales price.  The number of Palos Verdes homes sold in the first half of 2018 was lower than the first half of 2017 (340 compared to 350).  2018 first half average sales price for Palos Verdes homes increased compared to the first half of 2017 – $1,858,726 compared to $1,771,421.  Average price per square foot for Palos Verdes homes sold in the first half of 2018 was $656 compared to $634 for the same time period in 2017 – an increase of 3.5%.  Median sales price in the first half of 2018 increased 9.5%.

The mix of Palos Verdes homes sales for the first half of 2018 showed less sales in the $2,000,000 to $5,000,000 range, less sales under $1,000,000, and more sales over $5,000,000.  In first half of 2018, only 28 Palos Verdes homes sold under $1,000,000 which was 8.2% of sales (compared to 38 homes – 10.8% – in first half of 2017).  In the first half of 2018, 224 Palos Verdes homes sold between $1,000,000 and $2,000,000 which was 65.9% of sales (compared to 224 homes – 64% – in first half of 2017).  In first half of 2018, 80 Palos Verdes homes sold between $2,000,000 and $5,000,000 which was 23.5% of sales (compared to 85 homes – 24.3% – first half 2017).  Finally, in the first half of 2018, 8 Palos Verdes homes sold for $5,000,000+ which was 2.4% of sales (compared to 3 homes – .9% – first half 2017).

The total valuation for all single family Palos Verdes homes sold the first six months of 2018 increased from 2017 – $633,334,455 compared to $608,704,971.  In the first half of 2018, the highest priced home sold for $9,250,000 in Palos Verdes Estates and the lowest price home sold for $700,000 in Rancho Palos Verdes.  Next week, I will discuss Palos Verdes homes sales for first half 2018 for the individual Palos Verdes neighborhoods. To read my article on Palos Verdes homes sales first half 2017, click here.

Photo of Palos Verdes Gatehouse courtesy of Arvin Design