Open Houses Tomorrow

by Jim Ludes on June 13, 2014

in Buyers

I’m doing two open houses tomorrow afternoon.

  1. 105 E. Main Street, Braceville
  2. 738 W. Kennedy Road, Braidwood

Come on our and see me. I’ll have Jimmy Johns.

If you can’t make it to the opens, scope out the videos below.


Question: What is the highest we could price the house with the hope to sell it quickly?

Answer: My general rule of thumb is no more than 4% above it’s fair market price. Sometimes people get away with having their house priced high and someone making what amounts to a low ball offer on it and settling at a percentage a lot less than they were asking for. That’s somewhat rare, however. Usually a potential buyer won’t make what they feel is an insulting/low ball offer. In fact, most buyers won’t even come see your house if they feel that it’s overpriced. I always talk to sellers about the Carmax way of pricing. Carmax, unlike a typical dealership, is said to price its vehicles to sell. There is a no haggle policy where you pay the price on the sticker because the price on said sticker isn’t as inflated as it is at other dealerships. Price it right and people will come in and buy it for what you ask. I had a LOT of success doing this when the market was booming. Many sales at or above asking price, and even a handful of bidding wars. Obviously, since the down turn in the market, sellers don’t like doing that as much; they want the wiggle room (and most didn’t like doing that to begin with). But that’s where my 4% rule of thumb comes in. It also translates to price drops. Drops at less than 3 or 4% don’t really do much for me. When I see them come up onto our hot sheets (the lists of changes in market status among houses listed on the Multiple Listing Service) “Oh you dropped your house from $200,000 to $198,000? Surely there are many buyers out there that were willing to go to $198,000 on your place but just wouldn’t make an offer because you were at $200,000. That extra 2 grand was just the thing keeping them away.”
To show this isn’t much of an opinion and is based in some fact, I’m including the Braidwood 100 to 200k last 24 months of closed single family houses. The average closed price to last list price percentage is 95.7%. 30 of the 51 houses were at or above that. That’s why I always say we (any sellers and myself) need to be within that 4% if you want wiggle room.


Every now and then I want to take a look at how many homes are selling and what the median value of them is. This is something long time readers of my monthly email newsletter know well from the Statistics Corner of it. Today I took a peek back at single family, detached homes closed from 7/5/2010 to today and compared it to homes that closed those dates the previous 12 months.

Last 12 months vs. Previous 12 months

Are we trending up or down?

The question posed at the graph’s bottom is, “are we trending up or down?” The answer is simple- down.

The amount of homes sold in the current 12 month breakdown is LESS than the prior 12 months for every municipality surveyed. The median values are also less for all except Lockport, my hometown. (That’s just a little hometown pride- I don’t think values are affected any by my celebrity status.)


Absorption rates  tell you two big things: the type of market you’re in and about how long you might expect your home to need on the market to sell (If you don’t have an agent pricing and marketing you right to stay ahead of the curve …..but sometimes even if you do!) Many will tell you that the absorption rates in a normal market are 5-6 months, less time for a seller’s market and more time for a buyer’s market (like we’re in now.) The higher the months of absorption…..the more power a buyer is holding.

You can use absorption rates for big groups or little. Say, ALL homes  in Lockport [lots of results] OR 2 bedroom homes in Wilmington [not many results]. In any circumstance it gives you an idea of the market for the type of property you’re looking into.

Below you will see a chart of the number of homes sold in the past 12 months in various towns and how many per month that is. You will also see the current inventory and then the absorption rate. In this graph, blue stands for ice cold. Red, though the BEST of these groups, would be a stretch to identify as anything resembling hot. Even lukewarm might make me a liar. But you get the gist.

How fast do homes sell 'round here?

In case you don't want to sell quickly, please digest with ease.


Lately folks have begun to ask me a lot about short sales and foreclosures. Not that it’s an uncommon query, I’m just getting it more frequently. I thought I’d update everyone on how many are selling and where. Below you will see how many are selling and where over the last 6 months. You’ll note the town, how many short sales or foreclosures (combined) have closed and what percent of the total sales that is. This incorporates BOTH single family homes AND attached (duplexes, townhouses, condos).

  • Coal City/ Diamond/ Carbon Hill: 9 (31%)
  • Morris: 11 (20%)
  • Braidwood/ Godley: 14 (56%)
  • Wilmington: 14 (44%)
  • Gardner/ South Wilmington: 2 (40%)
  • Lockport: 43 (51%)
  • Romeoville: 56 (59%)
  • Bolingbrook: 104 (55%)
  • Joliet: 183 (57%)
What does this tell us? There’s a significant portion of what is selling that’s either been taken back by the bank or there is some financial trouble for the sellers. The larger towns/cities at the bottom of the list are seeing a majority of sales under these terms while Coal City and Morris have lucked out, thus far (if you call 20-31% of sales “lucking out.”) Did I miss your town or one you’re interested in? Let me know and I’ll look it up. It won’t take me long to get you the info you want!


Currently (as of 1/18/11) , in Braidwood there are 41 single family detached homes for sale. The median asking price of those homes is $139,900. That means half the homes are listed higher than that price and half are listed lower.

In the past 6 months, 26 single family homes have closed. The median sales price of those homes was $128,250.
Over the past 12 months, 48 single family homes have closed. The median sales price of those homes was $152,000.

Currently in Braidwood there are 11 attached homes for sale. The median asking price of those homes is $124,900.
In the past 6 months, 1 attached home has closed. The sales price of that home was $44,000.
Over the past 12 months, 2 attached have closed. The median sales price of those homes was $91,500.


Statistics Corner

December 4, 2010

Every month in my newsletter I look at a particular statistic. This month I took a peek at year-to-date numbers. In addition to County-wide stats, I went more in-depth with particular areas. These numbers are for single family homes from January 1 to November 30 for each of these particular years. And please keep in mind [...]

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