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Total Market Overview Report

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One of the best tools we have available to us as real estate agents is the Total Market Overview report, or TMO. You may have read our post about why Zillow doesn’t work very well in a non-disclosure state. Well, the TMO report is one answer to that problem. Along with statistics provided by the Multiple Listing Service, the TMO gives buyers and sellers valuable information about the market. If you’d rather watch the video on this topic, click the film icon.

What is a Total Market Overview Report?

The Total Market Overview is a report that tells us what our local market is doing in various segments. The report breaks up our local real estate market by city and home type. Each report is then further divided by price point.

How to Read a TMO

Take a look at this snippet of a TMO, pulled for the Coeur d’Alene area. This report focuses on single-family homes. For this example, we’re going to look at homes in the $250,000 – $274,999 price range (highlighted in photo).

Image depicts a portion of a Total Market Overview report, which is a spreadsheet-style report breaking down single family homes in the Coeur d'Alene area first by price, then by various statistics such average listing price, days on market, etc.

As we follow along the column headings at the top of the report, we see there are 11 homes for sale in this price range. Of those, 9 have accepted offers. That means the percentage of available homes that are already under contract is 81.8%. Skip the next column for a moment. Continuing along, you see 3 homes expired without selling in the last 6 months, while 45 homes sold in the same time. The next part is the good part: the average original asking price was $270,364, but the average final asking price was $262,244, showing that sellers brought their prices down just a bit from where they started. The next number shows the average sale price of the homes that sold. The average sales price compared to the final asking price indicates sellers are getting 99.1% of their asking price at the end of the day.

What does it all Mean?

Well, to dig into all this, let’s go back to that column we skipped. The Months of Inventory is an indicator of market health. A healthy, balanced level of inventory in a real estate market is between 5-7 months. When you get below 6 months of current inventory, that’s what we call a “Seller’s Market.” It stands to follow, then, that more than 6 months of inventory would be a “Buyer’s Market.” You can see what we mean when you hear us talk about how low inventory is right now. We only have a 1.2 month supply of homes in the $250,000 price range!

When there are not many homes for sale, the ones that are available sell FAST! Take a look at the last two columns of the report. The average days on market for homes that sold was 62 days. However, that includes the typical 30-45 day escrow, so really, they sold in about a month. The average days on market for currently active homes is 36 days. If the property is not yet sold, chances are it either just came on the market, or it’s been out there for a little bit, possibly indicating that it may be overpriced.

Knowing these numbers helps develop strategies. Sellers in this price range know a few things: Be prepared for a quick sale; know your numbers to get the best price with the least negotiation. Buyers also know a few things: Low ball offers in this range probably won’t go over well when sellers are getting 99% of asking price. If you see something you like, be prepared to move, because homes don’t stay “for sale” for very long.

Bottom Line

At the end of the day, your real estate agent is going to help you navigate all of this. The aim of this post is to show you how we use all this information to the best use of our clients. In non-disclosure states where final sales prices aren’t made available to county assessors or third party websites, the professionals working in the market are your best resource to make informed decisions. These reports are just one way that we do that. To see more TMO reports for North Idaho updated each week, follow the link.

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About The Author
Kevin Bennett

Prior to moving to North Idaho in 2005, I spent over 15 years in commercial banking, specializing in Personal Trust and Investment Management. As a Vice President and Senior Trust Officer, I negotiated, on behalf of my clients, both purchases and sales of all types of real estate. My focus on proactive client communication and customer service earned me numerous awards in the field. My family and I had the good fortune to return to the area where I joined my father, Frank Bennett in what became a strategic partnership to deliver a high level of customer service to our real estate clients. At the Bennett Realty Group, we look forward to coming to work every day and meeting new people anxious to learn more about what North Idaho has to offer. Whether we are marketing a home to sell or finding the perfect fit for one of our Buying clients, they know that they can count on us to pay special attention to the details to a smooth transaction. We have developed a world class marketing initiatives and special Buyer tools to help our real estate clients achieve their goals. One's home usually represents a significant investment and with this in mind we take special care to educate, communicate and follow-up to ensure and reinforce a sound decision. Keller Williams Platinum Award - Bennett Realty Group - 2017 Coldwell Banker's President's Elite Award - 2007, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016 Coldwell Banker's President's Circle Award - 2008, 2010 & 2011 2007 Star Performer Award - #1 Sales Coldwell Banker Associate Locally #1 Sales Associate in Idaho for Coldwell Banker in 2010