We have experience selling luxury homes and condos

Common home seller questions for a Blue Mountains REALTOR®

From our long experience helping people like you with all aspects of the selling process, we’ve put together some questions we often receive, along with some helpful answers. Canada Housing and Mortgage Corporation (CMHC) has some articles on selling a home that you might find useful. If you have additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Property sells year round. It’s mostly a function of supply and demand and other economic factors. The time of year you choose to sell can make a difference in the amount of time it takes and the final selling price. Weather conditions here in the South Georgian Bay area are often a consideration because buyers like to see what is under the snow.

Generally, the real estate market picks up in the early spring and becomes quiet again in the early winter although late summer can be slow months for real estate sales when everyone is on holiday. In September, sales activity tends to pick up for a second, although less vigorous, season which usually lasts into November. The market then slows again as buyers, sellers and REALTORS® turn their attention to the holidays.

The number of listings on the market diminishes in winter because sellers wonder whether or not they should take their homes off the market for the holidays. There are still buyers in the marketplace, but now those buyers have fewer homes to choose from and many choose to wait until spring. Homes on the market during the winter will have considerably less competition and attracts buyers who know what they are looking for. You’ll have the best results if your house is available to show to prospective buyers continuously until it sells no matter what the season.

Keep reading for more common home seller questions . . .

The two most important factors are price and condition. The first step is to price it properly. We are experts in market valuation and will suggest a range of prices for your consideration and feedback. If a home is priced too low, you may not receive the maximum price the market will pay. If it’s priced too high, it may not attract buyers who are looking in a particular price range. A good rule of thumb is to price a home so it sells within 30-60 days of being listed.

Condition affects the value of a property and the final selling price. A home that needs paint and flooring will sell at a discount to the appraised value because the homeowner will be required to invest time and money to remedy the problems. If a home has been meticulously maintained, there can be little objection to a fair price.

It’s important that the home gets the exposure it deserves through open houses, brokerage tours, multi-media advertising, good signage, and a strong listing on the MLS. Contact us today for a listing presentation on your house or condo.

Keep reading for more common home seller questions . . .

There are two official methods used to determine a home’s value: an appraisal and a comparative market analysis (CMA). An appraisal is different from a CMA. An appraisal is a method designed to create a justifiable valuation based on past sales with some weight to values in the near future.

Appraisers review numerous factors and base information on recent sales of similar properties, their location, square footage, construction quality, excess land, views, water frontage and amenities such as garages, number of baths, etc. A lender requires an appraisal to determine the loan-to-value.

A comparative market analysis is an informal estimate of market value performed by a REALTOR® for the purpose of introducing your property for sale to the market. It’s intended to be a starting price that can be adjusted depending on interest by the public. It is based on sales in the past 90 days and active listings; that will compete with your property, that are similar in size, style and location.

Some home owners may do their own price comparisons by researching similar homes in their neighbourhood. However, this may not reveal the true value of your home, especially if there are special features. For example, a 50-year roof is worth more than a 25-year roof; a yard filled with fruit trees will appeal to a cook; a garage with a mechanic’s bench will appeal to the auto enthusiast. Homes are priced based on the value to the best buyer we can find. Let us show you the true value of your home.

Keep reading for more common home seller questions . . .

The way you live in a home and the way you sell a house are two different things. There are three essential steps to get your home ready for professional photography and a listing on the MLS®:

  1. A deep cleaning
  2. Edited for a minimalist look
  3. Staged to show off the best features

Washing walls, steam cleaning the carpet, and scrubbing the kitchen and bathroom are the most cost effective ways to increase the selling price of your home.

Editing means decluttering, storing unused things, giving away furniture or other belongings that won’t be coming to the new home. This is the perfect time to do this! Make sure everything looks good and works so the buyer has no reason to begin discounting the price.

The second important thing to consider is “curb appeal.” People driving by a property will judge it from outside appearances and make a decision then as to whether or not they want to see the inside. Sweep the sidewalk, mow the lawn, prune the bushes, weed the garden and clean debris from the yard. Clean the windows (both inside and out) and make sure the paint is not chipped or flaking. Also, make sure that the doorbell works!

For showings, be sure the house smells good. Consider a fresh flower arrangement. Pleasant background music is also a nice touch.

Blue Mountains Property offers free home staging assistance to all new clients. Contact us to make an appointment today.

Minor repairs before putting the house on the market may lead to a better sales price. Buyers often include a contingency “inspection clause” in the purchase contract which allows them to back out if numerous defects are found. Once the problems are noted, buyers will attempt to negotiate repairs into the deal or lower the price with the seller.

Keep reading for more common home seller questions . . .

Any known problems must be revealed as a “material defect”. Material defects might include a septic system that is overdue for replacement or a furnace that blows cold air. A seller must disclose problems if they are aware of them:

  • Whether or not work done on the house meets local building codes and permits requirements
  • Defects that affect the value of the property
  • The presence of any neighbourhood nuisances or noises which a prospective buyer might not notice
  • Restrictions on the use of property including but not limited to zoning or rights-of-way

It’s important to note that failure to disclose may cause the new owners may seek financial compensation through legal means when the problem is discovered.

Latent defects are hidden from the present owner so a declaration cannot be made. Some examples are asbestos in the building infrastructure and buried heating oil tanks.

Protecting consumers from material and latent defects is what REALTORS® do for you! Contact us if you have any questions.

Receive a free market price analysis