We all like things soft – soft bread, soft skin, or soft drinks. But what about a soft market? In real estate, when there are winners, there have to be losers as well. Applied to our current soft market, this would mean that buyers are winners; and consequently, sellers have to be losers. But fortunately, a soft market doesn’t come in black and white. Jed Lewin of Triplemint explains what our current market situation means for both parties and how to get the best out of it.
What does soft market mean?
We’ve already touched on it in the intro, but let’s dive deeper. A soft market means that due to high inventory, median sales prices on apartments drop and buyers are presented with lots of choice. Sellers, consequently, are facing competition when placing their home on the market. Expert agent Jed Lewin elaborates on the consequences. “Buyers have more leverage in soft markets, because as more inventory sits longer, sellers get anxious”, he states, and continues; “when sellers get anxious that their property won’t sell, they become more willing to entertain creative offers.”
Does that necessarily mean that buyers can get away with murder? Not according to Jed, but he concedes; “submitting aggressive offers tied realistically to market factors can yield amazing value.” In other words: Ready, set, go! For these apartments.
From a Seller’s Point of View
Jed Lewin has vast experience with different market situations and stays calm regardless of any curveballs being thrown at him and his sellers. “In any market it is imperative that sellers take their cues from the market and price their home accordingly, regardless of how much they feel their home should be worth”, he explains. Jed knows that a home is a very emotional thing for any seller, “but in strict financial terms, any given property is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it”, he summarizes.
So should a seller just hang tight and wait for the turn of the tide? “Not necessarily”, says Jed. “Every seller has their own motivations for selling, but most often that decision is tied to a life event like a growing family, so watching market conditions is not a priority.” For any seller who might be anxious about losing money on their sale, Jed has a really good answer:
“Focus on how much value you’ll be getting on your new purchase on the other end; if you’re buying a replacement home in the same market you’ll be able to reap the benefits of the market as a buyer!” This is wisdom that we’ll cherish.
Selling Your Home In A Soft Market
Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty; what are strategies buyers can use to sell their home as fast and smooth as possible? “Smart buyers will always be attracted to good value, so while they might feel less urgency to pull the trigger in a soft market, a home that is priced accordingly will sell”, according to expert Jed Lewin.
As a seller, this means you’ll have to be flexible. “Don’t get married to a number and learn to be reactive to the market to avoid having your home sit on the market for too long.” With an ever-fluctuating market and the difficulty of making predictions, not even a seller’s market guarantees a smooth sale, Jed emphasizes.
Case By Case
As a former lawyer, Jed is dedicated to finding the best solutions for his clients. When working with a seller in a soft market, he starts by finding out the reason why they’re selling. Here are two possible scenarios:
- If they’re looking to upgrade or downsize, “while the conditions of the market may not allow for the greatest gain on their sale, it will allow them to buy a new home at excellent value.”
- If your motivation is just a change of scenery or relocation, it might be a good idea to wait until the market situation changes, says Jed. He doesn’t agree with real estate’s mantra “location, locations, location” and emphasizes that timing is everything.
If you do make the decision to sell your home in a soft market, Jed will be by your side the entire time.
“As a broker, my job is to educate my clients about the current market conditions and anticipated trends, to provide up to the minute analysis of the competition, and to guide my client towards creating the best conditions for a sale that leaves both parties happy.” Spoken like a true lawyer and empathetic real estate broker, Jed!