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For Sellers

A Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) is an estimated sale price for a property given current market conditions. A "comparative market analysis" or "CMA" is an estimate of value prepared by a real estate broker or salesperson that shows recent past sales for like properties and suggests a possible asking price for the owner's property. It encompasses sales of similar properties that have sold in your neighborhood with in the last 6 months. It usually comes in report form. It is not an appraisal, which is a professional estimate of your homes value. There is no fee associated for preparing a CMA.

An agent needs to walk through the property in question before preparing a CMA. Unless there are a lot of concerns, the entire process shouldn't take long. However, property condition does affect price. If you have specific plans to do work on the property, let us know.

After we review the property, our research in the Multiple Listing Service will be reconciled to your home with information about similar properties in the area that have recently sold. In order to arrive at a current price estimate, an agent should analyze information about listings that have sold and closed, those that are sold but haven't yet closed (the pending sales), active listings and expired listings.  It is not wise to base your list price on the list prices of you neighbors.

Pending and sold listings are the most reliable indicators of current market price. Active listings are only a gauge of your competition in the marketplace. Expired and withdrawn listings are homes that were listed for sale but for some reason didn't sell. Usually, the most common reason expired listings don't sell, they were priced too high.

With the results from the CMA's SOLD homes found in the MLS search, reconciled to your home and current condition, we can arrive at a selling price. Keep in mind that the price derived from a CMA is subjective. A CMA is not an appraisal. You need to hire a licensed appraiser to complete an appraisal.

Sellers should have a CMA done before listing their home for sale. Most people would agree, that when it comes to selling home, the less surprises the better!  Also, it gives you the opportunity to meet the agents that will represent you in the sale of your home.

Also, buyers should request a CMA on a property they are considering buying, particularly if they are new to the area and haven't had the opportunity to see many listings.  It is good to be an informed consumer. and it is not good to buy the most expensive home in the neighborhood!

As full time, professional agents we work actively in the area where the property is located. The Internet has made it possible for virtually anyone to access comparable sales information. However, without firsthand knowledge of the comparable properties and the local marketplace. this information could be inadequate

For example, quality upgrades usually have a positive effect on sale price. But if your home improvements are inferior in quality or design they can lower rather than increase the price. Suppose the information on a sold listing shows a remodeled kitchen. Without having seen the property, it's difficult to know how the remodeling affected the price.

Also, sometimes our CMA gives a price range rather than a set price. You're more likely to see this in markets were there is variation in terms of property size, age, architectural style and condition.

For Buyers

If you are buying, you should ask for a list of comparable (similar) homes in the area that are currently listed or that have recently sold. This is important to see if you are overpaying, or negotiating based on the condition of current home (deductions for: repairs, carpeting or painting).  If the information isn't available, you can take the original purchase price of the home and add or subtract the cost of any improvements and estimated property appreciation since the home was last purchased. County tax records show purchase prices, but may not show all the extras if they were paid for cash, or the improvement work was performed by the owner. Your Buyers Agent can assist you with rough estimate of annual appreciation.

Also, if you're not comfortable about the value of the property you are bidding on, then have a appraisal contingency built into in your purchase offer. If the appraisal comes in low, you may negotiate or withdraw offer.  Your Buyers agent can advise.

If you enter negotiations with a seller, you might want to have some extra time built into the contract in writing before responding to a counter offer. If the seller doesn't receive other offers in the meantime, your offer may start to look good. And if someone else places an offer on the home in the meantime, you've not placed yourself in a position to overpay or get into a bidding war.  It is good to walk away rather than overpay.

Above all, in all matters "time is of the  essence", and act in good faith, and remove emotion from the offer. Also, make sure that if you are unable to meet a deadline, get an extension in writing. All real estate contracts, and any modifications, amendments to them, and offers and counter-offers must be in writing in the state of Georgia for the contract to be valid.

Need a Free CMA/ Market Analysis?

Call us first!  We'll provide professional real estate services for an individual or a company!  Jim and Ellen Crawford are both Broker Associates, and Accredited Buyer Representatives.

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