If you are selling your Windsor Ontario home in 2014, you want to take some necessary steps in order for it to sell quickly and get the most amount of attention from buyers. Overall, the real estate market has changed from a year ago. Interest rates are rising, making affordability for many buyers out of reach. Not only that, but home prices are also rising and confidence regarding the overall economy is still a concern.
Yet the market has good news for sellers: Interest rates are still low and attractive. And there is a very good chance your home is worth more than it was a year ago. So if selling is part of your agenda in the coming year, and many homeowners are doing so, you need to get your home in good selling shape. Here are my recommendations to get the most money out of your home and sell it quickly:
1. Fix any issues buyers will have:
Buyers will almost always find something wrong with a home. They may not like the paint colour, or the landscaping and while you cannot please everyone, the goal should always be to please the MOST buyers. And the majority of buyers want to see a neutral, light and bright home and landscaping that is free of weeds, overgrown shrubs and messy lawn. In other words, you want to surpass buyers expectations of your home.
2. Clean and depersonalize:
There is no way around it; buyers want to walk into a spotlessly clean home that is void of any personal memorabilia. Store any family photos, personal collections, sports trophies and anything else that will take attention away from your home. Clean the home from top to bottom (did you know that majority of buyers look UP when they enter a home, so don’t forget those cobwebs). Get rid of oversized, stuffed furniture that can make a room look smaller and fix any repairs that may be needed.
3. Interview three real estate agents:
Not all real estate agents are created equal. Every agent brings a different approach to selling a home, such as marketing, pricing and other details. Ask each of them to present a comparative market analysis and tell you what they believe your home is worth. Remember, the goal is to get an offer quickly at the best price, however, if an agent says your home is worth far more than comps indicate, be aware. Some agents will promise anything to get your business.
4. Be realistic:
It is important for a seller to do some research and ask some questions. How long have homes been sitting on the market in your neighbourhood? Are they selling close to the list price or dramatically lower? The local real estate market varies depending on where you live, so don’t be fooled that your home will sell at top price days after going on the market when other similar homes have yet to sell after several months. The worst thing anyone can do is to over price their home right from the start. Not only will your home not sell, but buyers and agents will avoid viewing it all together. The more realistic you are, the better your selling experience will be.
5. Have a plan:
Make sure that your home is backed up with a well thought out marketing plan that is geared toward your target buyer. This includes heavy web presence since 9 out of 10 buyers start their home search online. If your home hasn’t sold within a timeline that feels appropriate to you and your agent, then lower the price and move on. Ask your agent for feedback after every showing so you can get an idea what buyers think about your property. The well-informed seller that is pro-active usually sells his or her home sooner rather than later.
6. Last but not least…..
Don’t buy another property if you haven’t sold your current home. While it’s fine to look, too many sellers find themselves with two mortgages during an unpredictable time in the real estate market. Again, the market is improving and certainly favourable to sellers, but no one can predict when a home will sell, or if the purchase will go through without any issues.
What I always tell my clients: A successful real estate transaction is when both parties walk away happy.