Selling Your Home Frequently Asked Questions FAQ
How do I get myself ready to sell my house?
View your home as a product you want to sell. Detach yourself emotionally from your house. This will be hard as most sellers have their identities reflected in their homes. You want to clear up the clutter from the house and remove your portraits from the walls to help buyers imagine living in the home. Appearance of the property and condition is an important factor. Current home buyers have access to internet listings and are very choosy and short of time. They will pay a premium for a home in move in condition. When selling a house there are various other important factors that affect your home sale such as mortgage rates, supply and demand, economic conditions which you cannot control but what you can control is how your home looks when you are selling it.
Should I sell my house first or buy first?
It is not required to have the proceeds from the sale of your house in order to purchase. You can obtain bridge financing from your mortgage broker or find out other options that are available. You will be able to find a new home when your home sells. Your experience from selling your home and working with Wayne looking at properties will have helped you gained an insight in the real estate market helping you with your home search.
When should I sell my house?
Right now we are in a seller’s market. This means that the number of qualified buyers are greater than the number of homes for sale. Currently it is an excellent time to sell your own home. There are other factors such as the weather, comparable homes for sale, mortgage rate changes, news, and seasonality which will affect the real estate market. Wayne will evaluate the best time to sell your house and present you with your best options so you can make an informed decision on when to sell.
What is the best way to price a home for sale?
The main thing to determine is how much your house is realistically worth in the market. This is called appraising a home’s value. The most important factor in appraising a home’s market value is recent sales of similar properties in the neighbourhood on Toronto MLS. Unfortunately pricing high can put you in a disadvantage. You will price those who cant afford it above their price range and wont be able to see it. Overpriced homes attract significantly less interest. The longer the house stays on the market buyers will wonder if there is something wrong with the house. If you reduce after this time to a fair market price, buyers will think you are desperate to sell and may offer a low ball lower than what you would have initially net if you had priced it fairly in the beginning. Accurate market pricing is very important to selling your home.
What items and equipment are included with a house?
In most cases window coverings, appliances, and fixtures. Fixtures are attached to house and cannot be easily removed. An example is a chandelier.
What do I need to give to my lawyer as a home seller?
After you negotiated the sale of your house, your real estate lawyer will require a copy of the accepted offer, your mortgage information, your last utility and municipal property tax bills, and any other property ownership records.
Should I put a For Sale sign on my front lawn?
I recommend a sign! You would be surprised on how many people call me for property information from seeing the For sale sign. It helps spread the word about your house being for sale.
Should I renovate or stage my house before putting it up for sale?
Part of my consultation with you, I will suggest certain repairs and upgrades that would make your home more sellable. And deter you from certain repairs or upgrades that would not recoup your investment. Recommended inexpensive preparations are cleaning, painting with neutral colors, removing clutter and kids toys, sealing your driveway, picture perfect garden, finishing your immaculate lawn, and potted plants. Recommended improvements are adding central air conditioning to your furnace, building a deck or patio, finish your basement, updating your kitchen cabinets, counter tops and appliances. New flooring and wall covers. Bathroom improvements. Be careful of overspending and over improving your home more than what the neighbourhood prices support. So no gold plated diamond studded faucets in a struggling neighbourhood. Staging is valuable and you can recoup the costs of the staging plus more if done right with the right staging. Home Staging will help the buyers imagine living in the home and help your home sell faster for more money.
How safe is a lockbox on my home for showings?
Home access by lockbox is the best way to allow qualified buyers see your home easily. To minimize the risk to you, your lockbox code is only released to visiting real estate agents and trusted professionals we have experience with (photographers and home inspectors). Prospective buyers do not have access to your house, they must always be accompanied by real estate agents.
Should I hold a public open house and is it effective?
Open houses are recommend. I have seen deals come from random open house visitors who were passing by, didn’t know the property was for sale, and were blown away when they saw the house. Don’t expect to always generate a sale from an open house but it is an important part of an overall marketing strategy to create interest and to spread the word about your home for sale. It helps concentrate the showings to the open house hours minimizing the interruptions to your family. Open houses offer the opportunity to receive feedback from visitors if the house is not selling and also leads on ways to make your home more appealing.
Can I take my property off the market if it does not sell within a specific time period?
Certainly you can. Though I will work to have a smooth and quick sale, this may not always result. If you change your mind on selling or your target price is not achieved, inform me and I can terminate or suspend our listing agreement. You can choose to relist at a better time.
Should I get a pre sale property inspection?
A pre sale home inspection with a reputable firm will cost roughly $400-600. It will help you identify any problems that need to be addressed so you can have them repaired on your own terms, at your own time, saving you money. A pre sale property inspection will reduce the time on market and sell at closer to the listing price, minimizing price negotiations during the sales process. You will have an advantage over competing homes without a home inspection, giving buyers peace of mind that there will be no horrible surprises after they buy it.
Should I look at offers only on a certain date or look at them as they arrive?
Depending on the local real estate market condition and your property’s situation one option may be better than the other. Usually homes that a large number of qualified buyers are looking for do the best with an offer date. Homes that have a lot of competing product vs qualified buyers are better suited to have offers come in traditionally without an offer date. Due to the current seller’s market in many pockets of Toronto, increasingly more home listings are going to look at offers on a specific date. This creates urgency and motivates the buyers to put in an offer instead of waiting around or deciding later. If I receive an offer from a buyer before your offer date (called a bully offer) it is my duty as your agent to let you know.
What is a good period of time between start of listing date and offer date?
I good hold back date between start of listing and offer date is typically 5-7 days over a weekend. For example starting on Tuesday with the offer date on the Monday. This gives time for the buyer’s Realtor to inspect along with a buyer visit at the weekend open house. Importantly this creates a feeling of scarcity and urgency to act by putting in an offer on a specific day or miss out on the property.
Will Realtors showing my house treat my house with respect?
Real estate agents are bound to the Real Estate Council of Ontario’s Code of Ethics (RECO). This code is meant to protect home buyers and sellers and raise the bar of service to a high level. I will give your instructions to visiting real estate agents such as not letting pets outside or removing shoes upon entering. Also signs will be placed to remind visitors. I deeply respect your home and property and understand your desire not to be disturbed or inconvenienced.
Is it possible to restrict showings to fit my schedule?
A common restriction is to restrict showings from 9 am to 8 pm for example. You can also request a certain number of hours notice before showings so you have time to adjust your schedule. But don’t restrict the time too much or make it too difficult for buyers to see the home or you can lose potential buyers.
Is it a good idea for the seller to be present to show buyers the features of my house?
From my experience buyers prefer the privacy of being able to see your home and discuss it openly with their agent, without the pressure of a seller being present. Your home’s best features will speak for itself. My marketing and advertising will highlight the best features of your home. My follow up with the buyers’s agent will help answer any questions they may have regarding your home.
Ready to Sell Your Home?
Click here For A Free Home Evaluation from Wayne or send Wayne a message using the contact form below and he will answer your questions. He will explain to you how to sell your house. You can relax as Wayne will help you sell house.