I don’t have much to say about Kimberly Blanton’s article in today’s Boston Globe, about people using an auctioneer (voluntarily) to sell their homes.

I don’t think it’s a good idea, as many would agree, except in very unique cases.

Being lazy is not a unique case, yet it seems that’s the only reason some of these people chose to go this route.

It seems as though it’s a lot of work to get it ready for auction, and yet very little chance you’ll be happy with the results, even though the article says 19 out of 26 homes sold through the auction the reporter attended.

I did read two things that annoyed me, a bit.

Sheldon Good & Co., a national auctioneer in Chicago, also reports doing more auctions, including more on behalf of developers selling the unsold units in large hotel-condo projects, particularly in resort areas.

”We think there’s a very high likelihood that trend is going to rise based on overbuilding in Boston, New York, Chicago, Houston, Orlando, and Jacksonville,” said Steve Good, chief executive. ”The slowdown is just beginning.”

Overbuilding in Boston? Huh? Since when? I assume, first of all, he means Massachusetts, because he couldn’t possibly mean Boston. I mean, there’s a housing shortage of epic proportions, everyone knows that. Second, even in Massachusetts, I have never read anywhere else that people think there’s a glut of homes being built. There is a stagnation in sales, and it will take awhile for things to right themselves, but, c’mon. This guy is talking garbage.

I also have a problem with this statement:

A growing number of homeowners and builders, unable to sell homes or condominiums the traditional way, through an agent, are turning to Sotheby’s-style auctions like this 26-property sale last month in Newton. With the housing market softening in US cities from Boston to Naples, Fla., to Utah ski towns, the National Auctioneers Association reported that residential properties valued at $14.2 billion sold in 2005 in live auctions, a 24 percent increase over 2003 sales.

That messes with the data to make it fit the reporter’s opinion. The volume of properties sold through auctions may have increased since 2003, but there was no softening in the housing market in that time, except at the very end of 2005. If there was an increase in auctions, it must have been for other reasons, not a cooling market.

Sellers literally put homes on the block – By Kimberly Blanton, The Boston Globe

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Updated: January 2018

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