How to Price a Home to Sell Fast

Home for sale sign in front of a trailer to illustate story about how to price your FSBO.
Home for sale sign in front of a trailer to illustate story about how to price your FSBO.

It's a tough time to be a homeowner trying to sell. The national statistics show inventories and prices holding steady through the first half of 2010. While this is a relief from the grim free fall that home sellers faced after the real estate bubble burst, there still isn't the upward momentum that owners prefer when they're looking for home sales.

According to a Wall Street Journal report, only 47 percent of houses listed for sale in major U.S. markets had actually sold by August 2010. Several of the remaining listings were taken off the market. Moreover, the national averages belie the differences that realtors and other experts are seeing from one region to another, and even one neighborhood to the next.

"There's no longer a national housing market," says Armando Montelongo, the real estate maven who was featured on A&E's "Flip This House," a housing-bubble-era reality show. "You can drive 200 miles and see a totally different real estate climate."

You might not have to drive that far. Realtors report homes getting offers after a few days on the market in some neighborhoods and languishing for six months or more the next town over. So how do you figure home value and set the right price?