How we (I, anyway) look for comparable values

34 circle.jpg

34 Circle Drive, off Indian Field, down near to I-95, has dropped its price to $2.775 million from $2.875. I’ve never used this forum as a platform to tout my own listings — in fact, I’ve refrained from mentioning my own listings completely in the past — but this house offers an illustrative example of how we idiot dirt peddlers try to come up with relative values, so I’ll point out factors that I considered when setting the price (and, full confession, the Mickster, and brother Gideon, were responsible for raising the price from my initial opinion — I was going for the owner’s desire for a quick sale, they thought we could achieve that and still get her more) for our new listing at 16 Norton Lane, in Hillcrest Park, Old Greenwich.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with 34 Circle Drive: it’s on the right side of the loop, so I-95 noise is minimized, and the street is a good one, but, comparing the two houses, Circle’s on a third of an acre, and its school district is Cos Cob and Central, while 16 Norton sits on a full acre in what I consider a more desirable area, with North Mianus and Eastern Middle School. So to me, looking at 34 Circle as a competitor when pricing Norton (and when Circle was asking $2.875), $2.950 seemed to be a good target price. In fact, I aimed to undercut it, but I was convinced by The Mickster and Gideon’s arguments to go a tad higher, which was, I hope, wise advice, and an example of why we agents reach out for second, even third opinions.

This post is not the start of some new marketing scheme of mine where I’ll disparage other listings to favor my own, and I repeat, in the 16 years I’ve been running this blog I’ve never touted my own listings at the expense of competing houses, but the similarities of these two listings prompted me to write about them (but sure, I’d prefer that a reader bought the Mickster’s and my listing, instead of this agent’s). Location, lot size, school district, age of construction: all go into the hopper when trying to value a house.

(Can’t resist — shouldn’t this trophy wall hold deer heads, or large fish?

(Can’t resist — shouldn’t this trophy wall hold deer heads, or large fish?