I want my home sold by end of this year. When is the best time to list? – Wondering
Dear Wondering: We traditionally experience our hottest market (by volume) in the spring, followed by a second rush in the fall. If you’re thinking of selling, I suggest you connect with your Realtor now, so you are prepared to enter the fall market as it gains momentum.
Early preparation always yields better results. This past spring, many local homeowners saw prices go up and then decided they wanted to sell. But as new properties flooded the market, pent-up buyer demand was reduced. As you might suspect, some of those who listed late in the spring received offers that were lower than they might have been just a few weeks earlier.
It can be tempting to wait to list your home until prices hit a certain level, but there’s no way to predict exactly when the market will peak. Seller’s markets can be short-lived. I suggest you get started on the listing process early, before fall inventory catches up with demand and the market slows down for the holidays.
I’m considering doing some renovations before listing my home, what do you think is reasonable? – Focused on First Impressions
Dear Focused: Boosting curb appeal, decluttering and cleaning should be your top priorities. If a potential buyer falls in love with your home when they pull up to it, they will likely be willing to overlook other minor imperfections. If you list early in the year when inventory is low, you may get away with doing less. With competition from other listings reduced, your home doesn’t need to be quite as perfect in order to stand out.
First impressions matter, which is why I provide professional staging and photography (not cell phone pictures) for all of my listings. These services help to present each home in a manner that is fresh and inviting. Across the board, I see staged homes attract more attention, more offers, and consequentially sell for more money than comparable properties in the marketplace.
I want to sell my home for the most money possible, but my Realtor suggested I lower the price. How is that going to help? – Asking for What I Want
Dear Asking: Housing prices are driven by what a buyer is willing to pay. While this may or may not line up with your expectations, I expect your Realtor is using a strategy that will likely work out in you favour. Most buyers are familiar with the market and with what their money can buy. By listing your home slightly under market value, your Realtor is trying to attract buyer attention. When done skillfully, this strategy can create a multiple offer situation, where buyers put their best foot forward (and quite often push up the selling price). In my experience, this approach is always more effective than over-pricing, which can cause buyers to miss your home in their search, or disregard it in favour of properties that appear to offer more value.