Overpriced London Ontario Condos?

Three weeks ago I worked with a couple who were looking for a detached quality one floor condo in London Ontario, either in the north or south end of London. They did not want brand new so that eliminated 21 new builds or to be built leaving 16 to choose from and 6 of them, overpriced London Ontario condos!

         overpriced London Ontario CONDOS?

Doing research , I had found out that  47 similar detached condos in London Ontario had sold at an average asking price of $350,000 and the ones available for sale were in this price range.

With the average days on the market being 46 days and 16 available, that indicated to me and my clients that if we offered a fair price and a quick close, both my clients and the home seller should be happy.

  Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on whose side you are on, when I indicated that my client’s were interested in bringing an offer, it was suggested to me that to get the offer in quickly and be close to asking price because there was lots of activity.

Yeah Right!

Even though these condos were overpriced, (3 of them in the $375,000 range) and on the market longer than the norm!

  My clients were of the same opinion as myself, they were able and ready buyers and eventually we found a seller and their sales person who were able and serious about selling!

  When a condo is for sale in London, there is competition and it should behoove the seller to know what that competition is and how their home stacks up. Buyers know because they are actually seeing units similar to yours and if your price and condition is not in line, you are helping the other condo owners sell their unit!

Note:  2 of those 3 condos did sell, but $20,000 less for one and $27,500 for the other and the 3rd condo,is still for sale!

Why Some Apartment Condos in London Ontario Take Longer to Sell

I should warn you before you read anymore that the comments I am going to make about why some apartment condos in London Ontario take longer to sell are out of frustration and exasperation and are no means to imply that the events that occurred will happen again. (Can pigs fly?)

Frustrated in London

My clients were interested in downsizing from their 2 storey home and were interested in seeing 2 bedroom units in this particular building all within $25,000 of each other in price. From $197,500 to $225,000.

We chose a Thursday for the viewings and so on Tuesday morning I proceeded to make arrangements for showings. Because we were interested in only this building, there were 6 listed for sale.

One agent replied within an hour that the time scheduled would be fine, another two replied the next morning and one in the afternoon that it was ok to show the units. As I had not heard from the other two, I called their offices and used our appointment scheduler called Touchbase. One called back right away and said she was sorry, she forgot to confirm.

The other agent I never ever did hear from, even after 3 attempts and I see, 2 weeks later, this condo is still listed for sale.

The evening before the scheduled showings, I did some homework. I pulled up everything that was sold in the building over the last 2 years, called a past client (who had purchased from me years ago) in the building and asked how happy she was, any complaints, how was the property manager, how solid the condo corporation was and other pertinent questions that would enable me to inform my clients on the condo culture of this building.

I pulled up the current taxes from the city for the units and only 1 out of 6 were accurate as per what was shown on the listing data form! I don’t mean by a few dollars, in one case $1732.00 difference!

The condo fees shown for all 6 units had a difference of $131.16! How can that be? Subsequently checking on things and talking to the Property Manager, the difference in fees were about $7.00 per floor! Only one condo unit had the accurate current condo fee.

Fair is fair, I thought, mistakes happen and I will be putting in clauses if my client does decide to put an offer in to verify all condo fees, taxes and any other discrepancies.

wrong key

On the day of the showings, I meet my clients in the lobby where lock boxes are that hold the keys for entrance to the building and individual units. My day is not starting out well, there are 9 lock boxes and only one is identified with the unit number? Opening up a few, there were some keys tagged with the unit # but some weren’t! My male client thought this was funny or was laughing at me because I only have 4 pockets on my pants and could only keep track of 4; he had 4 pockets as well so he helped!

A couple of the units we saw were as per the listing data, appliances, room sizes and amenities, one unit was a disgrace, one unit the occupant would not let us in (nobody told me you were coming, she said) and 2 units were out to lunch in price.

So now we get back down to the lobby, play Russian roulette with the keys and lock boxes and say to my clients “ Well, what do you think?” with a straight face, I might add.

Other than the usual comments like poor layout, overpriced compared to others, condition of the units, my clients just kept shaking their heads and asking themselves is this what they really want to do or move here?

Obviously, they did not purchase anything that day but one week and 2 buildings later, they purchased a beautiful unit that they and I liked. They now know and my past clients know why I choose to work with just a few clients at a time because having to prepare properly before every showing because of lack of faith in the listing data, is time consuming and for the buyer, creates a bit of mistrust in the MLS listing.

Again, I want to re-iterate that not all real estate agents were like some of the above and if you do list your condo, check weekly that the information on the listing is accurate. For two reasons, to ease the uncertainly of the buyer and prevent you from having your condo sit on the market while others are selling!

Note: I wrote this 4 years ago and as pigs still have not learned how to fly, I had similar challenges twice this year already.