There are more than 145 steps to complete a real estate transaction. It requires an organized, step-by-step approach that many homeowners just don't have the time, skill or experience to carry out. I will provide a variety of services including help in setting a listing price within current market guidelines. I will develop a marketing plan, offer recommendations and advice to make your home more attractive and "saleable," and act on your behalf during negotiations to ensure your interests are protected.
Another advantage of working with a me is the far-reaching market exposure your home will receive through the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®). This co-operative marketing system relays information about your home to a vast network of REALTORS® and therefore, potential homebuyers in your market. The greater the exposure your home receives, the more likely you are to find a buyer willing to pay your price.
Selling your home is not a simple procedure. It involves large sums of money, stringent legal requirements and the potential for costly mistakes. I am committed to spending the time it takes to help you sell your home in the least amount of time and for the best possible price.
I will disclose to you in writing, that I represent you, the Seller. A REALTOR® may represent a buyer or a seller; they may also represent both buyer and seller in the same transaction. I will be, by law, your agent. An agent owes his or her client the duties of utmost care, integrity, confidentiality and loyalty.
The process of selling a home starts with the Listing Agreement. It's a contract between you and my brokerage company, Royal Lepage Kingsbury Realty, Inc. It is a framework for subsequent forms and negotiations. It's important the agreement accurately reflects your property details and clearly spells out the rights and obligations of all parties. We both sign the listing agreement and each receive a copy. The agreement binds both parties to its terms and conditions.
Generally, in the agreement you appoint the brokerage company as your agent and give its representative, me, the authority to find a purchaser. The duration of the agreement is indicated, and the compensation is specified. The agreement also sets out the listing price, and accurately describes the property you are selling. That will include the lot size, building size, building style and materials, floor areas, heating/cooling systems, room sizes and descriptions.
This is when you must also decide what you are taking with you and what you are leaving with the house. Generally, unless stated otherwise, fixtures remain with the property, while chattels -- things which are movable -- aren't included in the sale. If necessary, what stays and what goes are listed under "inclusions" or "exclusions."
Finally, the Listing Agreement also details the financial conditions of the property, including the mortgage balance, mortgage monthly payments and the mortgage due date. It should also provide information about annual property taxes; and references for any easements, rights of way, liens or charges against the property.
You are responsible for full disclosure, which is a seller's obligation to disclose facts about properties for sale. The buyers will need to know material facts about the property - that is, anything that could materially affect the sale price or influence a buyer's decision to buy it. A major cause of post-sale disputes and lawsuits center around defects and disclosure, but most disputes can be avoided if proper disclosures are made. Intentionally withholding information about a property when selling it can have serious legal consequences.
Another advantage of listing with a me, a licenced REALTOR® is that only a REALTOR® is able to place your listing on the MLS® or Multiple Listing Service®. When you decide your listings will be on the Multiple Listing Service®, the information about your property is shared with all other REALTORS® through the MLS® system, and all REALTORS® have the opportunity to sell your property. This type of cooperative effort will result in the listing agent offering compensation to the selling agent. Your property gains more exposure, because it reaches the majority of the real estate professionals in your community.
There's another benefit of dealing with a REALTOR®. Through realtor.ca, the national property website, participating local real estate Boards can also advertise listings to potential buyers across Canada and around the world.
Another major issue for anyone selling a property is how much to ask for. Although you may have an idea of how much your house is worth, it's important to have your home valued by a professional on its own merits. Be careful not to price your property too high or too low. If it's too high, there's no sale; too low and you lose on your investment. I will do the research and have expertise to provide a market assessment of what similar properties in your area have sold for. I can also provide information on market history, such as the number of properties sold in your community the previous month or year.
I have a number of marketing tools and options to promote your property. First is the realtor.ca web site, which attracts more than a million unique visitors a month. It shows the details of your home to local, regional or national buyers looking for a property in your community.
I may recommend an open house as a marketing strategy. There are two types: first is an agent's open house, where sales representatives from the listing company will be invited to view your house. If you have signed an MLS® agreement, other REALTORS® may also be invited. Remember, each of these REALTORS® may have a prospective buyer. The second type of open house is a public open house, where members of the public are invited to walk through your home and have a look. It's an efficient way to show your home to many potential buyers at once. I will act as host, answering any questions.
Together, we will pick the time and date for an open house. In order to give easy access to your home, you will be provided with a secure lockbox for the key to your home. It's also a good idea to ensure that any valuables are put away in a safe location, then leave while the open house is underway. If you do stay, be sure to keep out of the way, and turn off any TVs or radios to let the agent and the buyer talk in peace.
Needless to say, clean counts with open houses. A general rule is that clean, uncluttered and well-lit spaces look larger and more attractive. People will naturally want to buy a house that is clean and well cared for.
Sometimes a home doesn't sell right away. Avoid the urge to pull your home off the market... be persistent! Generally, there are three reasons why a home may not sell as fast as others. First is location; second is condition; third is the asking price. Naturally, you can't change your home's location, but you can fix the condition of your home and you can, of course, adjust your price. Throughout the listing process, you need to be constantly comparing your asking price against those of similar properties in your area. It may be time to adjust the price of your home.
Review your selling strategy regularly with your listing agent: Is your house being shown regularly? Are you receiving the feedback from prospective buyers? Are you in touch with the marketplace? Is your property competing well? If not, what else can you do?
Once a buyer is found, you'll be receiving an offer that will detail how much, specify any conditions that may apply or be attached by the buyer, say when the buyer would like to take possession, and when the offer expires. As an act of good faith, the buyer will make a deposit with the offer.
You don't have to accept the offer as is. You may wish to make a counter offer that comes part-way to meeting the offer's conditions. The counter offer is one more step along the way to negotiating the final terms and conditions of the sale. The offer, once signed by everyone, is a binding contract. Make sure you understand and agree to all of the terms in the document. You may want to have it reviewed by your lawyer before signing.
Before closing, especially if the buyer makes it a condition of sale, you may be asked to provide a current survey, or a "real property report," showing the location of the house is on the property owned by you and that there are no encroachments. You may also have to prove that you have title to the property (the buyer's lawyer will check this out when he or she conducts a title search to see if there are any liens on the property, easements, rights of way or height restrictions). Especially in rural areas, you may also be asked to provide a certificate for a well or septic system, stating the system meets local standards.
The buyer may also make the purchase conditional on an inspection by a qualified engineer or inspector.
Then on or before closing day, lawyers representing you and the buyer will set up a trust account for the money coming from the sale and will pay off any mortgages you owe on the property. After these are paid, you will receive any money you have coming from the sale. You must deliver the property deed or transfer documents, mortgage details and keys to your lawyer. Your lawyer will register the mortgage discharge and transfer the deed at closing,
Your lawyer should also ensure that you receive compensation for prepaid expenses such as, property taxes, electrical or gas bills, or if applicable, any heating oil left in your tank. Some lenders will make it possible for your mortgage to be portable, so you can take your mortgage with you when you move to your new home.
Here, your responsibilities under the listing agreement end. You'll have paid your listing agent the agreed-upon compensation. This can be done by your lawyer who can arrange the payment from the proceeds of the sale.
The sale of property is a complex business transaction. There are distinct advantages to using my services. I am well-educated, knowledgeable, and experienced.
(The comments contained on this site are for information purposes only and do not constitute legal advice.)
What makes a house sell?
A successful sale requires that you concentrate on six considerations: your asking price, your terms of sale, the condition of your house, its location, its accessibility, and the extent of marketing exposure your house receives. While some of these factors are beyond your control, you can compensate by taking advantage of others (like a new paint job) to make your property as attractive to prospective buyers as possible.
When is the best time to list a house for sale? The "best" time to list your house is actually as soon as you decide to sell it. If you want to get the best price for your house, the key is to give yourself as much time as possible to sell it. More time means more potential buyers will probably see the house. This should result in more offers; it also gives you time to consider more options if the market is slow or initial interest is low.
Is there any seasonality to the market? Peak selling seasons vary in different areas, and weather has a lot to do with it. Late spring and early fall are the prime listing seasons in the Toronto area because houses tend to "show" better in those months than they do in the heat of summer or the cold of winter. And of course, people like to do their house shopping when the weather is pleasant.
But keep in mind that there are also more houses on the market during the prime seasons, so you'll have more competition. So while there is seasonality in the real estate market, it's not something that should dominate your decision on when to sell.
What about market conditions — price trends, interest rates, and the economy in general? Should they have any bearing on when I list? Probably not. Even if you're under no pressure to sell, waiting for better market conditions is not likely to increase your profit potential.
So how long should it take to sell? Average selling times vary from 10 to 90 days, according to market conditions in a particular region or even neighbourhood, But if it hasn't sold within 30 days of being placed on the market at least one of the six considerations: price, terms, condition, location, accessibility or market exposure must be made more attractive to prospective buyers. Selling in any market is easier if you keep time on your side.
What if I can't sell my old house before I have to move? This situation can arise for any number of reasons. For instance, getting the job promotion you've been waiting for may mean having to relocate very quickly. Another example: you finally find your "dream home," and need to get it under agreement before it sells to another buyer. Whatever the reason, don't panic. You have some viable alternatives to the worrisome possibility of double mortgage payments.
If you don't have to sell in order to buy a new home, consider the advantages and disadvantages of renting your current house. If you're being transferred before you've had a chance to decide on the new house, you may be able to obtain a short-term rental of your own while you're becoming familiar with the new area. Either way, a local real estate professional can usually help, by advising you how much you can expect to pay for rent in your new city, or what you need to charge for your current home to both cover your mortgage payments and take care of other costs you'll entail as a landlord.
Another solution available from some brokers is the guaranteed sale plan which is essentially a written promise to buy your house at a pre-determined price if it doesn't sell by a certain date. The amount of the guaranteed price varies considerably between brokers. It is prudent to have any sale guarantees reviewed by you lawyer prior to signing-on.
Basics of preparing a home for sale
Fully preparing your home for sale can make a considerable difference in the time it takes to sell it. You can help eliminate buyer objections before they arise by making necessary repairs and improvements, some of which are suggested below:
Outdoors Spruce up your garden and lawn; trim shrubbery and replace dead plants Yard and patio should be neat; outdoor furniture should be clean and in good shape Clean or paint your front door - remember first impressions last the longest Manicure your front yard; make sure your driveway and entryway are free of clutter Exterior Check that house numbers, mailbox, and exterior lighting are all in good condition Touch up with fresh paint as needed Inspect chimney for cracks or earthquake damage Repair loose trim, drain pipes, and fencing Clean stains and window screens Garage Remove clutter and tidy up the shelves Clean the floor Indoors Check the basics around the house. It takes just a minute to check all doors, windows and cabinets to make sure they don't stick, squeak or are too loose Clean your furnace and water heater so buyers know they are looking at a house that has been well maintained Kitchen Sinks, appliances and counter tops should sparkle; remove any clutter. Wax the floor Clean the oven range and other appliances Clean tile and grout; replace if necessary Bathrooms Clean mirrors, glass, chrome and porcelain surfaces Replace shower curtain if necessary Fix any faucet drips or leaks Clean grout and caulking; replace if necessary Closets Doors and drawers should open and close easily Remove clutter; tidy up shelves and racks Clothes should be neatly arranged Overall Apply fresh paint as needed. Think about brightening your interior with neutral-toned paint Clean draperies and carpets Replace burned out light bulbs Clean the fireplace and remove smoke stains from the wall and mantle
The spotlight is on home staging
Once primarily a luxury for the rich when selling their mansions, home staging is becoming popular with average homeowners seeking to get their properties off the market faster and earn more money. The proliferation of television programs on staging a home - often providing tips on how to do it yourself - has made it a fast-growing trend at all levels of real estate sales.
"It has always been done at high-end properties, but now the notion has gone mass market," said Lea Katsanis, chair and associate professor of the marketing department at Concordia University's John Molson School of Business.
What is Home Staging Home staging is the design process of de-personalizing a private residence prior to putting it up for sale in the real estate marketplace. This is often achieved by re-arranging, de-cluttering and improving on certain items.
The goal of staging a home is to help it sell quickly and for the most amount of money by appealing to the largest amount of prospective buyers. Staging focuses on improving a home’s potential by transforming it into a ‘neutral’ property because the way we live in our home is completely different than the way we should sell our home. Staging creates a living space buyers can "see" themselves in, similar to how model home displays are presented.
Staging also helps create an environment that will lead a buyer’s eye to the home’s attractive features, while minimizing its flaws.
Many home-sellers agree that staging is a practical first step prior to selling any home, especially since the cost of staging a home is usually much less than the increased selling price often achieved from a professionally staged home.
Staging Checklist The goal is to depersonalize a private residence before putting it up for sale. It is recommended to spend about one per cent of the asking price on staging.
Rearrange Declutter Improve Do minor repairs Paint Decorate
Being Accredited Home Staging Professional I can guide you how to stage your home for achieving TOP $$$. All My listings get Fress Staging Consultation. Take advantage of this offer and call me when you are ready to sell. Read testimonials and see how I helped other sellers to sell their home with my Staging Skills.