Stories Set Prices, But Changing Stories Move Prices

I was listening to a person talk about selling their house. They’re kicking themselves they should have moved when the market was hot last year, but they had some more work to do, and surely it’s still worth it now that everything in the house is perfect, right?

The story sets the price. They sound compelling. But.

There’s always a but.

But, that was back when everybody had money, COVID was still locking people down, mortgages were cheap, and buyers were on the chase to pay higher and higher prices.

And now, the story of bid-warring buyers has switched to price-slashing sellers.

Savings rates are falling just when down payments and mortgage rates are rising. It’s not that houses won’t get bought and sold, it’s that the stories buyers and sellers are telling are changing.

And when the stories change, so do the prices.

(Until they settle in again.)

If you look for it, you see it everywhere. Anywhere there’s a market, there are stories.

The stories people tell set the prices. And, when those stories change, the prices will adjust.

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