2012 NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers: Selling Experience

by Houston Agent


NAR's 2012 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers features quite a few interest details about what the selling experience was like for home sellers this year.

By Peter Ricci

For the last two weeks, we’ve taken a detailed look at the homebuyers side of the National Association of Realtors’ 2012 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, analyzing demographics, the home search process, what kinds of homes sold, referrals and repeat business, and finally, lending standards.

Now, though, it’s home sellers’ turn, and our first post on sellers will look at some interesting details of the seller experience for U.S. consumers in 2012.

NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers – The Selling Experience

As has been the case with the other segments of NAR’s Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, there was plenty of information about home sellers in 2012, including:

  • Sellers in 2012 had, typically, lived in their home for nine years, which is an increase from years past; in 2007, for instance, the typical stay for home sellers was six years.
  • Forty-six percent of sellers traded up to a larger home, while 29 percent bought a comparably-sized home and 25 percent downsized; 62 percent purchased a new home.
  • Recent sellers sold their home for 95 percent of the listing price, though 60 percent of home sellers did admit that they had to reduce the asking price at least once; typically, the sellers home was on the market for 11 weeks.
  • Home sellers moved a median distance of just 19 miles from their previous residence.
  • And lastly, the typical seller sold their home for a median equity gain of $20,000, or a 12 percent increase over the original purchase price; sellers who lived in their home for 11 to 15 years, though, saw a larger gain of $54,000, or 31 percent.

Seller Subsidies Entice Homebuyers in 2012

Perhaps the most interesting stat regarding the selling experience, though, dealt with seller incentives. According to the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 40 percent of sellers offered incentives, most often subsidizing home warranty policies and closing costs.

Lisa Dempsey, the branch manager for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Gary Greene’s Lake Houston office, said that incentives from home sellers are not all that common in her area, and if anything, they involve the agents more than anything else.

“I maybe see higher commissions,” she said, “but nothing else.”

But what about you? Do you use high commissions to entice buyer agents, or do you find it’s not necessary to generate interest?

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