Selling your home is one of the most important steps in your life. This 9 step Calgary home seller system will give you the tools in your belt that you need to maximize your profits, keep control, and ultimately eliminate or reduce the stress that can sometime come with the home selling process in Calgary and surrounding areas.
1. Knowing why you're selling, but keeping it to yourself, and your REALTOR.
The reasoning behind your decision to sell, will affect everything from setting a price, to deciding how much time and money to invest in getting your home ready for sale. Ask yourself, what's more important to you: the money you walk away with, or the length of time your property is on the market? Different goals can and often will dictate different strategies.However, it's important to keep in mind, that you shouldn't reveal your motivation to anyone else, whether it be on social media, or just within your sphere of influence, unintentionally, this may be used against you at the negotiating table. When working with an agent at the Real Estate Partners team, we have effective strategies and solutions to take this on and handle tricky or fishing questions from agents looking to get one up in the negotiation process.
2. Know the facts and do your research before setting a price on your home.
Landing on a listing price for your home shouldn't be done lightly. After you've set your price, you've essentially told buyers in the market the absolute maximum they have to pay for your property, however, pricing too high is as if not more risky as pricing too low. Don't forget, that the average Calgary real estate home buyer is looking at anywhere from 5-20 homes at the same time they are considering yours. This means that they have a basis of comparison, and in turn if your home doesn't compare favourably with competing listings in the price range you've set, you run the risk that you won't be taken seriously by prospects or agents, or even worse, in a declining housing market will find yourself chasing the market to match current market prices. As a result, your home could sit on the market for a long periods and, knowing this, many potential new buyers in the Calgary market will think there must be something wrong with your home as their agents (should) be providing this information, and even if you adjust market price, it may still leave some questioning at that point if there isn't something wrong with your home that they're simply not seeing.
3. Do your homework (Or Get Your Real Estate Partners Agent to)
An essential element to getting your home listed at the right price is by finding out what homes in your own and similar neighbourhoods have sold for in the past 6-12 months, and research to compare what current homes are listed for. This is exactly how prospective buyers will assess the worth of your home.
4. Find a GREAT Calgary real estate agent to represent your specific and unique needs.
According to market research, it's estimated that nearly 3/4s of homeowners state that they wouldn't use the same REALTOR who sold their home in their previous transaction. Consumer dissatisfaction typically boils down to poor communication which in turn results in not enough or inadequate feedback, lower pricing and strained relations. It's important that you interview your agent, perform your due diligence, ask the tough questions, and ensure that you're matched with an agent that puts your interests and needs first, but is ultimately going to compliment these their comprehensive marketing and client care plan.
5. Maximize your home's sale potential.
Every year, corporations in North America spend into the multi-billions on product and packaging design. This means that appearance is critical, and it would be foolish to ignore this when selling your home!While we understand that you may not be able to change your home's location or floor plan, you can do a lot to improve its appearance. The appearance and overall feel of your property will generate a greater emotional response than any other factor. Tidy up, organize and clean like you have never cleaned before. Pick up, straighten, unclutter, scrub, scour and dust. Do your best to fix everything, regardless of how insignificant it may feel to you. Your goal is to present your home to generate a "wow" response from prospective Calgary home buyers.The psychology is simple, your goal is to encourage and allow the home buyers to picture themselves living, and growing older in your home. Ultimately it is usually safe to say that the decision to buy a house is based on emotion, and not logic. Prospective buyers want to try on your home just like they would a new suit of clothes. If you follow them around pointing out improvements or if your decor is so different that it's difficult for a buyer to strip it away in his or her mind, you make it difficult for them to feel comfortable enough to imagine themselves an owner.
6. Make it incredibly easy for prospects to get information on your home.
You might be surprised or shocked to know that there are some highly touted and pushed marketing tools and pitches that many agents use to sell homes (e.g. traditional open houses) that are actually not very effective or completely ineffective in getting your home sold. In fact only 1% of homes are sold at an open house. Most agents utilize open houses as a tool for their own prospecting initiatives. Further to this, the potential home buyers that are calling for information on your home probably value their time as much as you do. The last thing they need is to be subjected to is a game of telephone tag with an agent, or an unwanted sales pitch. You need an agent who's experienced in navigating these calls, understands the buyers needs, and is able to quickly qualify them for your home. Remember, the more buyers you have competing for your home the better, because it creates an auction-like atmosphere that will put you in the driver's seat during negotiations. This is also why it's important that your agent does more than just list your home, simply putting it on the MLS system is not enough in todays market to make your home stand out and compete. Your agent should have a full marketing plan that includes every avenue of potential buyer generation.
7. Know your prospective buyer.
During the negotiation process, your ultimate goal, and main objective is to control the pace and set the duration. What are the buyer's motivations? Does s/he need to move quickly? Does s/he have enough funds to pay you your asking price? Knowing this information gives you the upper hand in the negotiation because you know how far you can push to get what you want. Having a talented agent during the negotiation process can easily make you money, by drawing out these details, asking the right questions, and negotiating through experience and training will put you in the best position possible to get the highest asking price for your home.
8. Make sure the contract is complete and isn't missing key points.
For your part as a home seller, make sure you disclose everything, this is typically referred to as material latent defects. Savvy Calgary home sellers proactively go above and beyond the laws to disclose all known defects to their buyers in writing. If the buyer knows about a problem, s/he can't come back with a lawsuit (big or small) later on.Make sure all the terms, expenses, and responsibilities are spelled out in the contract of the sale of your home, and resist the temptation to diverge from the contract. As an example, if the home buyer makes a request to move-in prior to closing, you have to consider your options, the risks, and how you should be fairly compensated depending on the request.
9. Avoid the temptation to move out before you sell your home.
Recent real estate studies have demonstrated that it is far more difficult to sell a home that is vacant as buyers have a hard time visualizing the space, and as previously mentioned, imagining themselves living there. In fact, it could even cost you thousands. You must also consider this, if you move, you're also potentially tipping off the buyers that you have a new home and are most likely highly motivated to sell faster. This of course, will give them the advantage at the negotiating table.For more information about any of our innovative homeowners programs, give us a call.