There’s a new tool available to realtors that will come in handy for sellers and buyers wanting a clear understanding of trends in the marketplace and how that will affect pricing or offers. It’s called the Market Conditions Report that can be accessed via MLS, and it is actually part of the required information residential property appraisers must submit when delivering appraisals for Fannie Mae loans. For realtors, this report will come in handy as we work with sellers and buyers to evaluate property values.

This tool, for instance, is great help for pricing short sales. Very often, short sales are priced at an average of 15% below the comparable market in order to generate offers as quickly as possible. However, in a neighborhood where active listing numbers are diminishing and sales are relatively stable as median sales prices remain relatively flat quarter to quarter, I’d advise a seller to price only slightly below the comparable market.

I’d also use it to help buyers make realistic offers reflecting market conditions in their target neighborhoods or developments. A condo situated in an area where median sale prices are holding steady, where sales volume is increasing and where the housing supply is declining is worth an offer consistent with the average list-to-sale price quotient for that subdivision.

At last, a resource we can all use to make informed pricing decisions. Bravo.

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