Selling Advice

Not Every Property Sells… But Why?

Everyone seems to be talking about today’s hot housing market. Stories of houses flying off the market are common place. Multiple offers and escalating prices are old news. But, do you know that almost 400 single-family homes on Oahu have been withdrawn from the market?

Hmmmmm…….in a market like ours, don’t all homes sell? The answer is a resounding “no.” Unfortunately, there are some listings that sit on the market far too long. Why do some homes languish on the market only to be ultimately withdrawn?

Reasons Why a Home Might Not Sell

I can’t speak for every specific property or homeowner, but I can tell you that there are usually three primary reasons why a property doesn’t sell — poor presentation, poor marketing, and poor pricing. Even in a hot market like ours, it is important to do these three things: present well, promote well, and price well.


Let’s start with presentation. As they say, “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.” As such, it’s critical that a property looks its best when it first hits the market. Attention to detail matters and so does professional staging and professional photography. You don’t have to invest a lot of money to prep a property. There are things you can do to maximize your house’s appeal without breaking the bank. Often, simple decluttering, cleaning, and repositioning furniture does the trick. Styling or professionally staging a home goes a long way, too. I provide this service for my clients and it is well worth the investment of time and money. Fresh paint, new flooring, and minor repairs can also add a lot of value to your property. And, getting your yard looking good enhances both appeal and price!


So, are you wondering about all those homes that were withdrawn? Were they all poorly presented? Not necessarily. Remember, there are other factors at play — promotion and pricing. Marketing a home correctly is critical to a successful sale. Smart marketing is a strategy, one that combines quality content with effective design and maximum exposure. For example, we market homes through our web database, social media, statewide and international networks, office locations, PR partners, our Forbes Global Properties membership, Luxury Portfolio, direct mail, events, Zillow, and more. We know that a well-presented and properly marketed property sells. Smart marketing matters. A lot.


Okay, so why would a home that is prepped properly, presents well, and is marketed well, still not sell? The answer is simple — price! It is important to price a property right from the outset because a property receives the best exposure in the early marketing stages. Price works like a magnet to attract the right buyers to your property — buyers that are already in the market. Buyers who are ready and able and who might not even see your home if it’s priced too high. Over-pricing your property will attract the wrong buyers who will compare your home to similarly priced properties that have more to offer, and the buyers who can afford it won’t even look at it because it isn’t priced right. Bottom line — when you price your home too high, you are marketing to the wrong pool of buyers.

How to Sell Your Property

Did all 389 homeowners who withdrew their homes from the market over the last six months fail to present, promote, and price their properties right? No. Certainly, there are other reasons why a Seller may decide not to sell. But, I wager to guess that a large percentage of homes that did not sell were for one, two, or perhaps all three of the reasons previously mentioned. If a property in today’s market doesn’t sell, it’s highly likely that it did not present well, it was not promoted well, or it wasn’t priced well. Not every home sells, but most will when all three factors are in play. So, prep your home so it presents well, make sure you hire a good company and an experienced agent who understands and employs smart marketing, and be sure to price your property right.

If you do, your property won’t be another sad statistic. It will sell and that is a story that ends well!

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