It has been said the truth will set you free but if you are a real estate agent, it may well cost you a listing.
When I first started in real estate, I would go on a listing presentation and after a home inspection and a short conversation the home owner would reveal the basic price range they expected from their home. Often substantially more than my research had previously supported. Due to a lack of confidence and feeling the home owner more knowledgeable about the area I would take an over priced listing. The end result being the house did not sell. I worked tirelessly to an unattainable goal, and the home started to become stigmatized, doing the home owner a disservice. The bottom line is no one benefited.
Now there are agents out there who thrive on over priced listings by using the Dutch Auction method of selling. The Dutch Auction is used primarily for large groups of items of similar character. An example would be Easter lilies - a hot item before Easter - hard to sell after. The growers bring their flowers to a large wholesale market, and the auctioneer will start with a number of plants at a high price and keep lowering it till someone says OK and the lot is theirs. The realtor on the presentation realizes the seller needs to sell for any number of reasons. They then agree to a high price and keep reducing until someone buys. This system works well for Easter lilies - not so much for houses.
I recently did a listing presentation on a nice home I felt would sell between $490,000 and $520,000. The lady explained how she had spent $80,000 on landscaping. The fact was the landscaper told her it was an $80,000 value, but if she acted now she would get a greatly reduced price. The second problem is 90% of the work was in the back yard. I have often spoke of curb appeal adding value, but back yards, thou nice, may return 35cents on the dollar. The lady also pointed out the basement renovation and once again spoke of a highly inflated price. I now see this property listed with another office for $599,000. Now I may be wrong and for the ladies sake I wish her well, for she has already moved. But experience says I am not.
I can't recall the number of times I have heard, I can always come down but I cannot go up. But the truth of the matter is when I have intentionally priced a home lower to get a competing offers, I have always gone over the list price.