Stub­born sell­ers re­fus­ing to recog­nise re­al­ity of the re­ces­sion

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - PROPERTY -

THE RE­CES­SION is still bit­ing se­verely – but some prop­erty sell­ers per­sist in not ac­cept­ing this re­al­ity.

“Ev­ery ma­jor es­tate agency at the Cape has in the last few months warned against over-pric­ing,” says An­ton du Plessis, CE of Vine­yard Es­tates, “but we still come across clients who rigidly refuse to ac­cept valid val­u­a­tions. In some cases they have even sus­pected us of bring­ing down the price to get a fast sale. No mat­ter how much ac­cu­rate mar­ket in­for­ma­tion we pro­duce to sub­stan­ti­ate our val­u­a­tions, they just will not ac­cept re­al­ity.

“Se­ri­ous buy­ers have to ac­cept re­duc­tions of 10 to 15 or even 20 per­cent on the 2006/2007 prices – or waste their own and their agent’s time. When faced with re­al­is­tic mar­ket prices some sell­ers im­me­di­ately go into de­nial,” says Du Plessis. “In a re­cent case we ad­vised the seller that the value of his home at present is R4.5 mil­lion to R5 mil­lion, but he in­sisted that we list it at R6 mil­lion.

“In an­other case, a south­ern sub­urbs seller with a home priced at just un­der R4 mil­lion was un­able to get any of­fers within R600 000 of his price, de­spite keep­ing the house on the mar­ket for a whole year. In­stead of ac­cept­ing a re­duc­tion to get a sale, he then con­tacted an­other agent, who agreed to list the prop­erty at R700 000 more than the orig­i­nal price.

“I re­ally do have a prob­lem with agents who be­have in this way. Pre­sum­ably they hope that an ig­no­rant or reck­less buyer will turn up – but in my ex­pe­ri­ence that al­most never hap­pens. What can they be hop­ing to achieve? In this case, they ad­ver­tised the house as a ‘new release’ which was a com­plete de­cep­tion.”

Du Plessis says he has three times had to refuse man­dates be­cause own­ers in­sisted on pric­ing un­re­al­is­ti­cally.

Du Plessis sees lower in­ter­est rates tak­ing ef­fect in the mar­ket by 2010.

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