Comps, Competition, and Compelling Pricing
Everyone wants to see "Comps," comparable closed sales when fixing a price for a new listing.
I agree. We have to begin with the end in mind, and the "End in Mind" is a closed sale. A contract price MUST be supported by market activity, specifically recent, comparable sales that have closed.
However, a smart seller and smart listing agent will also consider "Competition." And that will include properties outside the specific neighborhood where the home to be listed for sale is located.
See, while the neighborhood activity must support the sales price for appraisal purposes, Buyers have myriad choices outside the neighborhood.
A home worth $400,000 must compete with and draw attention away from other $400,000 choices. We just cannot tell Buyers that they can only shop one neighborhood.
So, Sellers have to be competitive across a broader area, perhaps a school district, or a local geographic area in a county or town.
In Cary, and Wake County, NC, the Wake County Public School System manages all public schools at the County level. Town boundaries do not indicate school assignments, and it is not uncommon to see a neighborhood, all or part, reassigned to another school
So, parents will shop various school assignments, attempt to grasp stability in assignment, and affordable neighborhood options. To do so, they may look in a ten mile radius, or farther. That search may take them out of Cary, and into Morrisville, Apex, Raleigh or any other local municipality.
That is why it is smart to consider a wide area of competitive Active listings when pricing a home.
Comps, Competition, and Compelling Pricing, via 60 Seconds in Real Estate, Cary NC: