Will Scathing Feedback Lower the Seller’s Price?

I’ve certainly taken my swipes at the seemingly ubiquitous showing feedback forms that Buyers’ agents receive after they show a home.

The main knocks:  they ask for information no good Buyer’s agent is going to provide — e.g., “what is the home worth?” — especially if they have a client with serious interest; the agent doesn’t know the area, so isn’t qualified to answer that question, anyways; it’s not the Buyer’s agent’s job to critique the listing agent’s staging and marketing; it can be transparently (and blatantly) self-serving, most commonly by a Buyer’s agent who thinks they can lower the price by dumping on the house*; and most agents spend about 3 seconds filling them out, rendering them useless.   See, “The My-Client-Didn’t-Like It-Stop-Bugging-Me Showing Feedback.”

So, what is the one instance where — at least in my opinion — Buyer feedback can be very useful?

When it alerts the Seller that prospective Buyers are overlooking something.

Exhibit A

I sold a home in Golden Valley last year where — not withstanding the “.25 acre” listed on MLS, no one seemed to realize that there was a big yard to the west of the house (the yard was located on the other side of the detached garage, and apparently Buyers thought it belonged to the neighbor).

So, I had a second sign put up in the middle of the yard, and also called attention to the yard’s location in the Agent and Public Remarks fields on MLS.

It sold 3 weeks later, after a total of six weeks on the market.

P.S.:  My listing clients regularly hear my favorite line about Buyer feedback:  ‘the only kind I really care about is a full-price offer (or close) from a well-qualified Buyer.’

*I actually received something very much like this feedback on one of my listings a couple years ago:

Curb appeal:  ‘Awful’
Floor plan:  ‘Atrocious’
Condition:  ‘Terrible’
Price:  ‘Ridiculously high.’
Comments:  ‘They’re very interested; please keep me updated.’

The upshot?

I sold the house — which was actually quite appealing and in good overall condition — to someone else shortly thereafter for 96% of the asking price.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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