“Freakonomics,” a 2005 book by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, revealed that real estate agents keep their personal homes on the market 10 days longer and sell them for about 3 percent more than residences sold for clients. The book does not explain these statistics, but some observers say readers should not assume the worst about agents. The National Association of Realtors insists that the main reasons properties do not move are price and the fact that sellers have not cleaned, decluttered, or changed the decor to be more neutral. Sellers often are shocked to learn that prospective buyers do not like the decor or the smell of their home, while real estate agents are better able to gauge resale value and know what future buyers will like about their own homes. As for price, NAR says sellers often set asking prices based on need, ego, or greed. When selling their own homes, agents make the decision to take the risk of holding out for a better price. However, when working with clients, it is the seller who must make that decision. | Read More