Once a month or so on this blog, Windsor Ontario real estate agents, myself included, answer some of the top questions that are often asked of us throughout the day. Now that the busy summer selling/buying season is over and we head into fall, our clients are looking forward to see what the real estate market has in store for all of us.
Here are some of the most common questions we are asked this time of the year:
1. “What type of buyers are looking for homes now? Didn’t I miss my big opportunity to sell my house this past spring and summer?”
Don’t look at the seasons when you are contemplating putting your home on the market. Buyers are looking 24/7 and 365 days of the year for homes. Fall is a great time to sell your home because, as I have mentioned, you have only serious buyers looking. Whether they have been transferred, looking to downsize, or move into a larger home, buyers want to buy and it doesn’t matter what time of the year it is.
2. “After months of looking, I found a home that I love and am ready to make an offer. How do I know if the seller is motivated?”
How long has the home been on the market? What are the neighbourhood comps? Why are the homeowners selling? These are just some of the questions you need to ask your real estate agent before you make an offer. If the home has been sitting for months without an offer, chances are, it is overpriced or maybe it’s in an undesirable location and chances are the sellers are motivated. If the sellers are getting rid of their home because of financial difficulties or a job transfer, then they may be very eager to entertain a low ball offer. Finally, look at the comps. Is the home priced in line with others that have sold in the neighbourhood? It is very important to rely on your real estate agent to get this information. If the home is just recently on the market and priced fairly, then a lowball offer may not be welcome. Again, it depends on the seller’s circumstances and your real estate agent’s experience to determine if they are in fact, motivated and eager to unload the property.
3. “This is the first time I am selling a home so what can I expect?
Selling a home is an individual experience and it really depends on what you put into it to make it a successful one. Some sellers choose not to do much to sell their home while others are very involved and want to know everything. Our advice to you is to do whatever repairs are needed, update wherever possible, hire a professional, full-time real estate agent who knows your neighbourhood well, and make your home available for showings, especially those that are sudden and unexpected.
4. “Why should I get a home inspection on new construction?”
Getting a home inspection on any home, old or brand new should be one of the first things a buyer does after their offer is expected. Even builders of new construction can make mistakes that can go unnoticed so it is imperative that you hire your own inspector to have them look over the home from top to bottom. Builders are not offended by this, nor are they surprised. Most welcome it. This way, you can have repairs made before you move in!
5. “I just found out I was being transferred and my home is on the market. Will it take longer to sell my house since it will be vacant?”
It’s always better to have a home furnished when selling a property whenever possible as it allows buyers to see how furnishings go in a home. If at all possible, hire a stager to place even a little furniture throughout a home so buyers can imagine living there. This is a great investment and can sell your home more quickly. However, if this is impossible, then you simply have no choice but to leave your home as vacant. Some sellers have left behind photo books of their furnished home to give buyers an idea. If you do this, make sure the photos show your home in its best possible light – clean, organized and attractive. Again, this is where it is important to hire a good, well-connected, professional real estate agent who can show your home in the best possible way and promote it within the real estate industry.