Why don't real estate signs have the price posted?

It would be nice to know what the asking price is when you happen to spot a sign with a property for sale without having to call about it or look it up online. Most car lots post their car’s prices as well as gas stations the price of gas. Why don’t realtors post the price of the property on the sign itself?


This is the response wiki post. You can edit this out for your response.

Some guesses:

  • If you’re a serious buyer, you already know approximately how much the house will sell for based on the size and neighborhood.

  • The asking price changes until it’s sold, and they don’t want to update the sign.

  • The sign with the price seems gaudy, if only because it has not been the convention to date.

And my best guess is:

  • If the price is outside of your budget, the listing realtor will have an opportunity to sell you on other properties they are representing that are more in line with your budget.

When I was looking, they actually usually stuck printed pages with info and the current (as of printing) asking price in a tube on the sign. Alternately, there’s a phone number to call in big numbers on the sign.

Along with what you’ve already pointed out, someone either calling in for more information or stopping their vehicle to walk out and get a paper also intentionally creates a sunk cost for the potential buyer. Sunk cost makes the potential buyer irrationally motivated to generate something of value (completed transaction) out of their already expended effort.


So there is no federal law against posting the price on the sign? :grinning: If the price is low, posting it would attract buyers who never thought they could afford the place and who would have just passed on by. It would be gaudy only if overpriced.

Because somebody who doesn’t know the price is likely not working with a realtor, or only casually looking, or doesn’t know how to use realtor.com.

All three categories are potentially new customers for the selling agent. They want you to call them so they can sell you that particular house, or become your buying agent and show you other houses. The question of “how much is this” leads to “would you like to see it” or “what are you looking for in a home?” or “can you come in and I can show you other homes?”

If you want to see prices, use the zillow app. It can show you prices photos of homes for sale based on your phone’s location.

It may be rare, but some RE signs do have the price added as a rider under the main panel.
My guess (being in the RE sign business) is they are not added because of the cost.
Most realtors and office managers of real estate offices are very cost conscience.
Adding another $25+ per listing can get expensive when multiplied times the number of listings an office may have in a year.
Zoning in some areas may not allow for the extra sign space.
Plus now, you can easily look up the price on the internet in a matter of seconds.

Totally agree. These guys would rather put the $25 into finding/soliciting a new listing.

Because they reuse the signs after they sell the house. The signs are expensive, beautiful workwork art, no reason to trash the signs after one sale. So, if they made a custom sign for a particular house and then reused that sign (with the old price) when selling a different house, it would create a ruckus.
Imagine if they made a sign for a $200k house, which is the norm around here. If they sold the $200k house and put the same sign in front of a trash house, no one would bother to contact the realtor because the starting price is way too unrealistic. If the new house is a mansion worth millions, well if you’ve ever put ANYTHING in the free section on craigslist, you know how that would turn out for the realtor.