Gainesville is a college town, and he had bought the home for his son to live in while the son went to school. The father was the decision maker, and so I dealt with him almost exclusively.
He lived in Miami, and we did everything by phone. He responded to my FSBO letter, and we listed the home. He listed for $189,900 with the former agent from Fall 2006 to Spring 2007.
I listed the home high in the beginning at $184,900. It’s hard to get a seller to reality over the phone versus in person.
His motivation was this. His son wouldn’t graduate college until the spring of 2008.
But the father didn’t want the son to have to stay in Gainesville to look after the home when he did graduate.
That is why they put the house on the market. It was so the son could rent an apartment his last year and move out of town right away when he graduated.
So, if the home did not sell until my listing expired the end of August 2007, he would still have plenty more time to sell.
Here is what I did to get this seller to sell his home before my listing expired.
First, I called him every week with an update on the activity on the home. This was to build rapport and keep him happy as a seller. Within a month he began to realize that the price needed to be reduced. But, he still waited about three weeks to reduce it.
Then, we sat on the market for another month, and I started talking to him every week about reducing the price.
This guy was a hard sell. First, he had low motivation and second he was stubborn about the price. We had to reduce the price three times. Finally, we got one offer that he rejected, and then another offer two weeks later.
This seller had started at $184,900, and he was finally willing to accept $168,000. His home was technically worth $175,000 to $180,000 if you looked at comparable homes listed for sale.