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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Real Estate Report: Price Reduction Does Not Signal Distressed Seller

By Judy Szablak

Special to WestportNow

Whether buying or selling a home in Westport, appropriate pricing for the market is of the utmost importance.

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Featured Home: This home at 188 Cross Highway is listed at $1,499,000. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of William Raveis — Westport

Experts rely on prior similar sales in the neighborhood, and/or of similar homes.

Arriving at a price as compared to another home that is currently active does not indicate value, as an owner can ask any price they wish for their home.

The property needs to sell before it can be considered as a comparable for value.

Online value estimators that don’t take into account home and area specifics are not reliable, either.

These sites even provide disclaimers that their estimates can vary as much as 20 percent or more regarding their estimate.

Some sellers still wish to “test the market” and attempt to get a higher price, only to find out later on that they have overpriced their home for current conditions. In those instances, reductions are in order to adjust pricing for the market.

A few sellers wish to build a little wiggle room into the asking price for negotiations, and some agents will accommodate that request for a short time.

What sometimes gets lost in the equation is that on average, Westport homes have been selling at 95 percent of asking price, and the sometimes-anticipated room for negotiations is already built in the agent’s value estimate.

When you see that a home has taken a price reduction, it does not signal a distressed seller, or a slow market.

These adjustments are not all that uncommon, and should not be cause to read between the lines and assume problems exist with the home, or the market.

A real estate agent or home appraiser is your best bet, as they will compare a home to others that have recently sold, and make adjustments accordingly to arrive at the correct listing and/or sale price.

Market Stats

There are now 359 homes actively on the market, which have been listed for an average of 101 days, with a cumulative market time of 195 days. The average list price is $2,150,485 and the median price remains at $1,699,000.

A home on Beachside Avenue is the highest priced property for sale at $28 million, and the lowest available priced single family is a two-bedroom home on Hales Road for $300,000.

Thirty-eight new listings came on the market in the last seven days. Six homes came back on the market after being under deposit, or temporarily withdrawn. Seventeen properties had a price change.

Twelve properties have gone under the initial deposit stage, which we call CTS, and another nine properties went into pending status, which means that the conditions have been satisfied, and the property is scheduled to close.

The average price of those nine pending properties was $2,474,093. There are currently 46 homes in CTS status throughout Westport, and another 73 properties scheduled to close townwide, with an average price of $1,813,175.

Closings: There were 10 single family homes reported as sold in the last week, and they were listed on average at $1,802,000 with an average market time of 130 days. There were 117 status changes in the last seven days.

Condos: There are 10 condominiums that are available, and they have been listed an average of 106 days. Their average listing price is $780,590 and the median price is $787,000.

The highest priced condo in town is listed at $1,275,000 and is a three-bedroom home located at Terra Nova Circle, and the lowest priced unit for sale is a two-bedroom home on Hills Lane for $285,000.

There were no new listings this week, and no homes came back on the market. There were two price changes, and one property went under the initial stage of deposit. No properties entered pending status.

There are two properties townwide that are currently in CTS status, and two properties scheduled to close, with an average list price of $569,000.

Three sales were reported during the last week, and were listed on average at $1,114,667. There were seven status changes.

Rentals: If you are interested in renting year round, either furnished or unfurnished, there are 64 homes or apartments available. The median price is $6,100 per month and the average price is $6,784 per month. These year-round rental opportunities have been on the market an average of 70 days.

There are 77 short-term rental opportunities that are available, and they have been on the market an average of 74 days. Their average price is $15,113 and the median price is $14,000.

Please note that seasonal rental prices are sometimes listed as an aggregate price for the season, or they can be listed as per the monthly rental cost.

Source — Market data is compiled from the GFC-CMLS and represents activity through our local MLS system. Private sales are not included in these statistics.

Featured Home

This home at 188 Cross Highway is listed at $1,499,000.

This 11-room Colonial revival was originally built circa 1728 and is also known as the Samuel Meeker Homestead.

Home to five generations of the Meeker family, the home’s historical significance is well documented.

Worth noting is that when the British landed on Compo Beach for the British Invasion and what is known as the Danbury Raid of 1777, a musket-ball was shot through the front door. That door remains, as well as evidence to that effect.

Throughout the years, special attention has been made to preserve its original charm, character and splendor. Upgrades and additions were specifically designed to complement the original dwelling, enlarging the home to its current 3,963-square feet of living area.

The skylit entry foyer is affectionately referred to as the “garden room” and has two sets of French doors that lead out to the level 1.21-acre property.

The living room with fireplace has a barrel ceiling and Brazilian Cherry flooring, as well as two sets of French doors that lead out to the stone patio. A nicely hidden wet bar area has a sink and fridge.

The dining room has original beams left intact, as well as a fireplace.

The Rose Adams-designed kitchen has two Dutch-doors, and incorporates a vintage design with farm sink along with state-of-the-art stainless steel appliances. A fireplace adds to the charm of the informal dining area.

The family room retains original ceiling beams, wide-plank flooring, and a beehive oven.

A main level master suite has a fireplace, and a French door to its own private patio. The elegant bath was created by Waterworks, and includes a whirlpool and marble steam shower.

The directly adjacent office would also serve very well as a sitting room or nursery if so desired.

Upstairs, there are three to four bedrooms, including the original master bedroom with original chestnut flooring.

A walk-up attic that wraps around a chimney accesses the third floor loft and balcony.

The lower level is partially finished, and the workshop area is believed to have been a bomb shelter, complete with a 1,000-gallon emergency water storage tank.

Extras and items to note — four to five bedrooms, three full and two half baths, five fireplaces, including original beehive oven, hand-hewn beams, wide plank floorboards, walk-up attic with loft and balcony, 576-square feet in finished lower level.

Taxes are in process of being recalculated.

Listing/photo courtesy of William Raveis — Westport.


Judy Szablak
(Editor’s Note: Judy Szablak of Coldwell Banker Westport — Riverside, Fairfield County CT Realtor since 1984 is author of “The Art of Buying or Selling a Home,” and featured on HGTV’s real estate show, “Desperate to Buy.” Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or visit her online at http://www.CThomesAndRealEstate.com.

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Posted 05/10/17 at 01:17 PM  Permalink



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