What To Look For In Comparable Sales When Pricing

Pricing a home for a buyer or seller is a tricky game; it’s more an art than a science. However, if you’re wondering how we, as Realtors(R), price properties for sale or evaluate the pricing of a property for a buyer, I wanted to give you an outline of how I do it, which varies by type of property.

Condos

1. Units in the building are the ideal comparable (“comp”). Generally any┬átier┬ásale (so any unit ending in the same number – 612, 712, 1012, etc) will be the identical unit in layout and square footage. Account for any improvements – carpet v. hardwood, granite v. corian, appliance upgrades, loft styles v. traditional, etc.

2. Similar size units in neighboring buildings of a similar age and structure (ie. year built, high rise v. garden style, etc.)

3. Stay within 6 months of recent sales. If that’s not possible, you can use as far back as a year, but account for market changes since then.

Single Family Homes

1. Neighborhood sales within 6 months, up to 1 year. Same idea as condos

2. Similar style of houses (don’t compare a cape cod to a colonial, or a new McMansion to an older rambler just because they have the same number of beds/baths.) Stay within a 5-10 year age range.

3. Similar size of square footage, levels, bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. Compare apples to apples.

4. Compare lot sizes – a lot of value in Arlington is in the land itself, so make sure you account for that in pricing.

Townhomes

A delicate balance between condos and single family homes – most townhome communities have very few different layouts, so compare floorplans for size, upgrades, etc.

1. Account for parking – is there a 1 car garage? 2-car garage? Make sure you account for these differences.

2. Is there an outdoor area – deck or patio? Account for that too.

 

As you can see, there’s a lot to consider in pricing. It’s not just bedrooms and bathrooms, as some may have you think. Especially in today’s changing market with adapting to new demands, styles, and fluctuations in value, it’s important to have someone on your side making sure you’re accounting for all of the small things that go into pricing.