Death by a thousand cuts

I’m not questioning the pricing decisions of the owners of 94 Meadow Wood Drive as they’ve tried to sell their house since 2008; people have their own reasons for what they do and I’m not privy to those reasons. I do think that, were I interested in actually selling a property and not just showcasing it for all the world to see for 1,000 days or so, I’d take a different approach.

This house first appeared in 2008, asking $7.150 million. The owners went through eight price cuts, ending at $5.295 million in May, 2011, then raided it to $5.850 million that June. It’s now been dropped two more times and today is marked down to $5.475, still $180,000 above where it wouldn’t sell last May.

17 Comments

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17 responses to “Death by a thousand cuts

  1. Cos Cobber

    I dont understand. I thought it you followed all the rules; elite prep school/havard/mba or jd/goldman or wachtel/mercedes/you’d want this belle haven house to complete the script? are some of the young 30 somethings not aware of the script?

  2. Anonymous

    Great location, cheap entre to the Belle Haven club, house doesnt look to bad either if new stuff in Riverside is selling for $4.9MM.

    • I don’t know that this location is actually in the Belle Haven association. Could be, but many houses over there are “near” Belle Haven but that and fifty cents ….

  3. The New Normal

    you forgot manhattan

    hey there aren’t many people that fit the bill – hence no demand

  4. Anonymous

    This one is definitely in the association. Not sure why it won’t sell.

    • We know why it didn’t sell in 2008: no one wanted to pay $7.150 for it. Why hasn’t it sold now? I don’t know but as I’ve warned here before, a certain stigma attaches to a house that’s been on the market for a long period of time. Buyers’ thinking seems to be along the lines of, “if no one else wants it, why should I?”

  5. Cos Cobber

    CF, I do believe the “if now one else wants it, why should I?” is far more substantive and pervasive mindset than sellers and their agents give credence too. When a potential buyer tours a house and learns it’s been on the market for 1000 days the buyer assumes their must be something wrong with it…and moves on.

    • True, CC, but remember that joke about the economist and his friend strolling on the sidewalk. His friend sees the economist step over a twenty-dollar-bill without pausing and asks, “aren’t you going to pick that up?” “Nah,” the economists says, “if it were real someone else would have taken it by now.”

      Sometimes the only thing wrong with an unsold house is its original price. If it’s dropped below current value, it can be a bargain.

  6. Cos Cobber

    Yeah, but now in order to move the house you have to materially discount the listing in order to shed the stale listing stigma.

  7. Inagua

    Chris,

    Please help me deconstruct this. The dirt looks like $2 million. The cost of construction is another $2 million. A reasonable premium for having everything set up would make this place worth between $4.5 million and $5 million. Asking $5.45 million is not crazy if this were a new listing. Or am I missing something? What is the mortgage situation?

  8. Anonymous

    I think the dirt is worth more than 2 million. It’s a full acre in a prime, prime location. I don’t think you could replace it at this price. Must be something with the house?

  9. Anonymous

    Inagua,

    Asking $5.45 is not crazy. BUT, buying it is CRAZY if you think the market moves lower from here. The reason that the real estate market sucks and will trade lower is that many people have figured out that the game is rigged and don’t want to play anymore. Look at the volume in the stock market. Mom and Pop (the retail investor) are not playing that game anymore either. For the majority of the population, many long term decisions have been put on hold.

  10. The New Normal

    Anonymous 2:09,

    Yes we should put our $ in the mattress and bury our heads in the sand

    People paying $5mm+ for a home are the ones most levered/exposed to the stock market and economic recovery – they’re the ones rigging the game not being taken advantage of

    They are feeling better right about now and their bonuses will probably recover a lot from last year if the stock mkt holds up

    Of course, if stocks crash sell off sharply from here, all bets are off…..

  11. Anonymous

    @ The new normal,

    I am pretty sure that “the game riggers” that you are talking about already own a nice home. They may also have many colleagues that have lost jobs plus they know that compensation is NOT going to be what it was while we go through a major de-leveraging cycle. Plus, there are a lot less people employed in the financial services industry which kills the “move up” market in places like Greenwich. Unless they live in a complete bubble, the writing is already on the wall and they understand that. you can not print your way to prosperity. It is not “If” stocks crash or “if” the market sells off it is when. You are correct that all bets are off when that happens.

  12. Real Estate Junkie

    I’m with Inagua…what’s the mortgage situation?

  13. Anonymous

    This had an accepted offer when it was priced at $5.2- Why they then raised the price is a mystery. Not getting very good advise. It is a nice house and should sell in the high 4’s. Located in the Belle Haven Association.