How to Start a Bidding War on Your Home

by Danielle Skowronek

In today’s Ask the Agent segment, I’m going to answer a question I’ve gotten lately from a few sellers on how to price their home so that it sells quick and potentially gets a bidding war. It’s a great question and, everyone loves to get a bidding war especially when they’re in the seller’s seat or wanting to sell their home quickly.

Bidding Wars

It is a seller’s market in the Arlington, D.C. area, so bidding wars do happen. They’re not happening at the pace they did a couple years ago but, we’ve only got two to three months supply of inventory. It is still a seller’s market, and if you do things correctly it’s still possible to get a bidding war.

A Bidding War Requires the 3 P’s

Well, I can’t just talk about price alone when I answer this question. There’s actually three P’s that matter. price, promotion, and presentation. If you do all these correctly you’ll create fear of loss in the buyer’s mind which is what results in great offers and bidding wars.


If you’d mess one of them up, more than likely instead of fear of loss the question in the buyer’s mind or the way the buyer’s thinking is going to be, “Well, I wonder how long I have to wait till there’s a price drop or how much cheaper can I get it from this price.” in terms of price, you want to price the home close to what you think it’s going to actually sell for.

If you price too high, buyers know that. This is a very educated market, a very sophisticated market; information is easily disseminated these days. Buyers are educated, they have access to the information, they know how to analyze it and they’re not going to overpay. And we see this quite often where homes are priced quickly sell within the first week or two and other homes that are even just a little bit over price sit. price it close to what you think it’s going to sell for and definitely don’t go over.


You want to make sure your home is in great shape, that it shows well, that you take care of, all the repairs and upgrades no matter how minor you think they might be. , if you’ve got dirty carpet or stained carpet, it’s better just to repair it. Even if you tell the buyers, “Hey, we’ll give you a $500 credit to replace it,” that’s not as good as actually doing it yourself, or…and the same goes with painting and other types of repairs. Buyers sometimes have trouble picturing how things will look in a different condition, so it’s better just to give it in the best possible condition.

When they start seeing little things that are wrong for the house, psychologically it creates questions in their mind about what else is wrong with it, and you want them to be on the other end of that spectrum. Make sure that you get the staging, get rid of junk, do the minor repairs, make it look like the home’s well cared for. It’s very important.


The home has to reach the maximum amount of buyers. This can only be done through promotion, so make sure you’re working with a real estate agent that’s going to know how to promote your home through multiple channels. , it’s going to…make sure the agent has a healthy marketing budgets and ask them where they’re going to market it, and you want a multi-tiered approach between signs, direct mail, online, social media, these are all important. You need to get that home promoted so that you’ll reach the maximum amount of buyers.

Bidding War Key Takeaways

If you take care of the three P’s: pricing, presentation and promotion, your home’s going to sell fast and maybe get multiple offers. If you have any questions about this, we’d love to help you, or if you have any other questions for our Ask the Agent segment, please let me know. And as always, have a great day.

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