Why does a home or lot not sell? In almost all cases it was not priced right. If a home is priced properly and attractively it will always find a buyer if the marketing is handled properly. However if the price is not appropriate no amount of marketing and splash will make a difference to getting it sold. Despite the existence of the phrase “Selling ice to the Eskimos” the reality is much, much different. The Eskimos would buy the ice if it were priced right. i.e. it is more sensible to buy it rather than spend the time to go and get it.

This goes for real estate too. To sell a house it must be attractively priced to make it a good opportunity. There is not point hoping and praying for a Lottery winner to come along and want to pay you twice the value of your home. You don’t help yourself or your real estate agent by having this ‘pie in the sky’ attitude. Most folks with money to spend are not silly with it. In fact, most of the high end clients I’ve dealt with were much more conscious of the value of a dollar than the low end client’s I have worked with. The demand more value for money and more ‘value added content’.

In Bahamas Real Estate I see many, many sellers who are very unrealistic in their expectations. I recently heard a truism – “You don’t sell real estate unless you have to.” And if you have to sell, be realistic, put on your buyers shoes and take a walk around your home or lot. What would you do if you were buying? It is hard to put aside prejudices and truly be empathetic but it is a worthwhile exercise.

Similarly – don’t try to by real estate that the seller doesn’t want to sell. Unless you are truly prepared to pay a heavy premium over market value. I’ve had a client recently who didn’t want to buy anything that was for sale, he wanted to buy homes that the seller wasn’t interested in selling and then was offended when the unwilling seller stated their price…

In any event, what does it look like in the real estate market in the Bahamas?

Over the past few years, the Bahamas MLS has provided the ability to get a real picture of the market that we didn’t have before. There is now a window into the workings and functioning of market here and what it is revealing is telling.

For instance, over the past years it is quite astounding how many properties simply never sell at all. This is shown by the number of expired listings which essentially are Unsold or Market Rejected. Basically overpriced and no one was willing to consider it. The history of expired listings on the MLS is below:

2013 – 668 expired listings (skewed because many are still active this year)

2012 – 1,017 expired

2011 – 1,038 expired

2010 – 1,063 expired

And as of right now there are currently 2,013 properties for sale being actively marketed around the Bahamas.

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Above:  Johnnys Cay, located between Iconic Hope Town and Man O War Cay, Abaco, Bahamas.  Newly listed.

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