Your listing is not selling. Often, that comes down to the list price, which means you’re not approaching this correctly. 

So, I’m going to explain exactly what to do to get price adjustments on your listings.

This takes a skill set that agents didn’t really need in 2020 and 2021—but right now, it’s a skill that will separate those who see growth in their real estate business from those who don’t. 

If your client’s home isn’t selling, there are only a few things you can look at to determine why. And when it comes down to the list price, that’s when you need to have a conversation no agent looks forward to. 

I’m going to show you the data to use to support a pricing strategy that will help you navigate these conversations and get the best possible outcome for your client. 

Three reasons why a home sells

We know that there are going to be three reasons why a great home sells. This is something that every single agent should be future-pacing in their listing appointment the first time they meet the seller, not after they list the home and get it on the market.

The three reasons are:

  1. Buyers have the right emotional reaction when they walk through the door. 
  2. Your seller’s home is getting the right exposure online and offline
  3. The home is priced properly or positioned properly to be the next home to sell

When you’re talking to your client about why their home isn’t selling, and why other homes in their market are selling, always lead with these three reasons. 

Let’s face it—if the home is not selling in a few weeks right now, when you’re getting close to your average time on the market, it’s not priced properly. That’s the reality of it. 

Let’s work under the assumption the home is showing well, and that you’re doing the right things when it comes to marketing the property. If you’re using high-quality listing photos, you have a complete description, you’re marketing the home correctly, and the home shows well, you have to look at those other two factors. 

There’s plenty of data you can use, and I’m a big believer in sending the data over before you have the conversation. 

This is called third-party validation. The data is not you telling the seller to adjust the price; it’s simply showing how the market is reacting to what the homeowner is offering. 

The data shows that there are buyers ready to sign agreements of sale. They’re getting mortgage applications and putting deposit money down. They’re showing signs of intent. 

Remember a home is only worth as much as a buyer’s willing to pay. You’ve got to look at all this data and feedback. Most agents don’t share that information. So, before you schedule the call for the price adjustment conversation, send your client three key pieces of data they can review before you sit down with them:

  1. The listing activity report
  2. Online web traffic reports
  3. Pricing benchmark report

#1—Listing activity report

Prior to scheduling a call, send out the listing activity report. This can be done with ShowingTime or another showing service.

Be sure to send the homeowner version so it doesn’t have all the agent’s information on there. It’s going to have just the feedback, such as the number of people who thought the home was priced too high, and the number of people who thought the home showed well.

The listing activity report will give you pie charts of what that looks like and summarize all the good and bad things people had to say about the home. 

Remember, this isn’t you saying it—it’s active buyers in the market. I’d be sending that feedback report regularly, whether it is a weekly summary, or in real-time. You have to get that information in front of the sellers so they can see what’s happening through that unfiltered feedback from real buyers. 

You’re not curating this feedback; this is data collected by a neutral third party. 

#2—Online web traffic reports

Secondly, are you sending online traffic reports? How many saves do you have on Zillow? How many searches have you appeared in on Realtor.com? How many people have looked at the home on these different websites because they get the most traffic? 

You can show that to the seller and say, 

“We had 700 people look at this home online. We’ve had two showings scheduled so far, and both of them thought the home was priced too high. That tells me we may need to go to X to get the home sold.”

Again, you’re using data to validate your recommendation to get their home sold. 

#3—Pricing benchmark report

There’s a great new report on ShowingTime called a pricing benchmark report. The pricing benchmark report lets you customize settings based on the zip code, county, or city where the property is located. You can filter out things like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, prices, etc. 

Scroll through this as well and send some screenshots of the report to your sellers. This will show how many other homes comparable to your homeowner’s sold over the past six months and how long those homes spent on the market before they sold. 

For example, let’s say there are 45 other homes like your seller’s that sold over the past six months, and they all spent an average of 14.2 days on the market before they went pending. 

Meanwhile, your seller’s home has been on the market for 78 days, which tells you it’s taking longer than average to sell. You’ve had 23 people view the property, and 78% of them thought the home’s list price was too high. And not one has written an offer yet. 

We know it takes an average of six to 10 showings to generate an offer. So this may be the market telling us something here, but you’re validating this all with data.

You’ve got a pricing benchmark report about the market connected to the MLS from ShowingTime. You’ve got all the feedback so you know exactly what the buyers are saying. And you’ve got the online traffic reports. 

Remember, when you sell a home, you’ve got to sell it three times:

  1. To the real estate agents (to show the property to their buyers)
  2. To the buyer who’s going to write up a contract that’s acceptable to you 
  3. To the mortgage company so it appraises for the purchase price. 

And these are conversations you want to continually remind the sellers about. 

Script to use in price adjustment conversations with your sellers

After you send all this data—you send the web traffic, you send the feedback, you send the benchmark pricing report or whatever market data that you have—and you send all the photos and all the details, you can then compare them to show where the differences are in the marketplace:

  • “This home’s bigger” 
  • “This home’s more updated” 
  • “This home is newer”

After you send the market data, the feedback, and the exposure reports, then the actual conversation may be as simple as— 

“Hey, Wendy, it’s Tom here with RE/MAX. I wanted to call you because your property at 123 Main Street. We’ve had a lot of traffic come through and given everything happening in the market right now and the lack of a written reaction from a buyer, I’m clear. We need to go to X to get the home sold.”

And then just stop talking. Let them talk. Let them react. And the reason you want to keep it short is this is going to be a tough conversation. 

Here’s what you don’t want to say: Hey, Wendy, how are you? 

You know how they’re doing. Their home’s not selling. Nobody cares. Get to the point. Be clear and concise, send the supporting data, and be ready to have a tough conversation. 

Some things you want to remind these folks during these conversations are, “Hey, I want what you want, Wendy, I’m on your side here. We want to get the best price, and I wouldn’t be doing my job if I wasn’t having this conversation with you.” 

This is not an easy conversation. And it requires a skill set that almost disappeared in 2020 and 2021 because of the way the market was. It’s not that way anymore. 

If you want to get serious about selling listings, having these tough conversations is going to be critical to the survival and growth of your business. Because that’s what it’s going to take to help your clients sell their homes for the best possible price. 

You want to be their trusted ally, no matter what the market is doing. Be the guide who isn’t afraid to tell them what they don’t want to hear—but that they absolutely need to know.