They Were Made to Move

By Dave Fratello | September 25th, 2007
In June, MBC featured a South End walkstreet home that had hit the MLS after being listed first for some time on Zillow with a "Make Me Move " price of $3.75m.

Once 332 6th hit the MLS, the asking price took a 10% step down to reality, to $3.375m.

332 6th was sold within a month (hey, it's a lovely walkstreet home, of course it went fast!). It closed the other day for $3.141m. That's $234k off the MLS list price, and down 16.2% from that first dream price on Zillow.

Everyone's happy. One family has a nice $3m walkstreet home, and another walks with a nice $1.3m profit.

Uh-oh. Someone is not happy. The sellers of another $3m walkstreet home have canceled their listing. Perhaps they finally saw the writing on the wall. Perhaps the 6th St. sale ended their delusions.

There was always something strange and half-hearted about the 7-month effort to sell 404 10th. Almost like the sellers were using an agent and the MLS as they might have used Zillow's "Make Me Move." They set a high price and waited to see what might happen.

The owners bought this high-style Lazar build (5br/3ba, 2900 sq. ft. – 1200 sq. ft. smaller than the 6th St. house) in April 2006 for $2.5m. Not yet a year later, in Feb. 2007, they put it up for sale at $3.2m, and quickly raised it to $3.3m, the price it had for most of the Spring and Summer.

Sure, people pay $3m for lovely walkstreet homes. But not every one is a bargain at that price, particularly when buyers know that you paid 33% less last year.

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