For many people, the prospect of selling their home or investment property is daunting. So many questions and worries. Here is a sequential list of how to go about it.
1. Understand your motivation
Do you really want to sell your home? Selling and moving home is perhaps one of the most stressful things we ever do. What will you gain or lose? In general, you may choose to move for one of the following reasons. You need a larger home. You need a smaller home. You need a home elsewhere. Can you articulate what success will look like for you? What will your life look like after your current home has been sold?
2. Prepare your home for sale
Tidying up. De-cluttering and completing some repairs may be necessary. Your REALTOR® may be able to guide you. Here’s a helpful link 5 Ways to Prepare Your Home for Sale. A word about documents. If you own a single-family home, you should get a new Real Property Report or ensure that your current one will be acceptable to most buyers. Ask your REALTOR® for guidance. If you own a condo, you must have a current set of Condo Documents ready for presentation and review by potential buyers. Ask your property manager, or your condo board for direction on this.
3. Select your method of selling
Are you committed to working with professionals? If so, skip to the next step. If you are tempted to try “for sale by owner” this section is for you. Unless you are skilled in marketing, negotiation and contract writing, selling by yourself might not be the best approach. If you want to try, why not put-up a sign on your lawn and post a Kijijji ad. Just know that you are exposed to only a tiny sliver of the market and you risk selling for less than full market value. Based on your choices, you will be marketing into different layers of the market, some less attractive than others. Click this link to learn more Will You Retail or Wholesale Your Home?
4. Select your service provider
A good service provider will offer you sound advice before, during and after you engage with them. A good service provider will ensure you are positioned well in the market, you enjoy full exposure, and they will deliver full market value in a timely fashion. You do have choices. You could select a discount REALTOR®, a traditional full service and more expensive REALTOR®, or you could select a full-service flat fee REALTOR® like ourselves. To be thorough, see this blog 11 Ways to Pick a REALTOR®
5. Go to market
There’s a bit more to this than signing a listing contract and putting the home on the MLS. If you have chosen a full-service REALTOR®, there will be photos, measuring, social media marketing and when Covid 19 is over, Open Houses to think about. Many potential clients ask me how long it will take to sell. In general, a complete home selling cycle takes about 8 to 12 weeks. And one last thing. Do make sure that you have a Virtual Tour. This tool has become very important during Covid 19. Click this link to learn more 3 Reasons to Offer a Virtual Tour
6. Allow showings
If your home is vacant, you can skip this section. In general, it pays dividends to be flexible with your lifestyle and allow as many showings as possible. Our clients are provided with access to a useful tool called Showing Time. You will receive notifications for showing requests on your phone or computer. You will conveniently be able to accept, deny or suggest an alternate time for showings.
7. Assess your progress
Taking stock is a crucial part of your home selling program. Most homes sell within 30 to perhaps 60 days. Assessing market interest every 15 days and adjusting your ‘offer’ as required would be wise. What items can you adjust? Typically, we take a second look at your possession date, your fixtures and fittings offered, asking price and in some cases cooperating commission.
8. Accept and negotiate offers
It’s not always possible, but you should ask your REALTOR® to try and create a multiple offer situation. The best REALTORS® are skilled in this area. It’s good for you because it changes the question in the buyer’s mind from “I really want this home, but what discount can I get?” to “I really want this home, so how much do I need to pay to win?”
9. Allow the buyer to complete their due diligence
Your buyer will almost certainly make an offer subject to securing finance, of which there are 2 stages, (click here to learn about this) 2 Stages of Finance Approval and a satisfactory inspection. Please consider the inspection appointment to be just like another showing. Make sure the house is spic and span. Be prepared to leave for the duration of the inspection, which could take between 2 and 4 hours.
10. Accept the condition waivers (or not)
At the current time, it’s taking buyers about 2 weeks to secure financing. I strongly suggest you ask for the inspection to be completed and out of the way within 7 days. A buyer that is willing to spend time and money on an early inspection is demonstrating their commitment to the transaction and it allows time to agree on how to manage deficiencies, or recommended repairs, that may have been discovered during the inspection. Last minute inspections are not recommended.
11. Prepare to move
Booking movers, throwing away or donating items you no longer need, packing your personal items. These are all things you need to take care of. Please make sure that the house receives a good clean after all your possessions have been removed. Don’t forget to follow the contract in terms of what fixtures and fittings are left behind. Don’t pack your garage door openers. These are usually specified in the contract and the buyer will be looking for them.
At this stage you must select a lawyer. In most cases your REALTORS® brokerage will prepare a conveyancing package and send it out about 2 weeks before your sale is due to close. Please be sure to call your lawyer and make sure he has reviewed all documents before you make an appointment to sign off on final papers. In some cases, the lawyers may suggest a few final tweaks are made to the agreement. If there is disagreement, you may have to consider a holdback. Early review is recommended.
12. Closing day
Your contract will normally call for possession at noon on the day of closing. Your REALTOR® will be contacting your lawyer at noon on possession day, to confirm she can release keys to the buyer’s agent. In most cases, your REALTOR® will hang onto the key that was used for showings to facilitate key release. Spare keys can be left in the house. Perhaps in a kitchen drawer.
After that, your lawyer will be closing the file, paying off any monies owing for mortgages, unpaid taxes and transaction fees. The net balance will be forwarded to you.
About the author:
You can read more about the author of this blog by clicking this link – Stuart Neal Broker Owner & REALTOR®.
Want more information about our transparent & affordable full service FLAT FEE home selling programs? Please feel free to call our broker owner Stuart Neal at: 780-760-2014 or visit our home sellers page www.FlatFeeRealtyAdvisors.ca
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