Selling

3 Things That All Homeowners Should Look For When Selling Their Homes

toronto real estate

Many homeowners will overlook the difficulty of finding the perfect home. Sadly, the same homeowners will also forget how difficult selling a home is. Naive homeowners think that as soon as they put a “for sale” sign in their lawn, they will have dozens of potential buyers knocking down their door. In reality, this isn’t often the case. With this in mind, homeowners should learn a few tricks of the trade before putting their home up for sale. One of these tricks is knowing what to look for when selling a home. Knowing these things will make the house selling process quicker and easier.

#1 - Current Average Price of Nearby Homes

Chances are, there are other homeowners nearby that are also trying to sell their homes. Before putting their home up on the market, it is wise for homeowners to learn what these prices are. To do this, homeowners can do research online or contact the real estate agency that is selling the home. Homeowners that can’t access this information can look at closed sales in the neighborhood. Once a house sale has closed, homeowners can easily find the final asking price. Knowing this information can help a homeowner pick the right price the first time.

#2 - Necessary Repairs That Need to Be Made

Before a homeowner puts their house up for sale, they should look for any repairs that need to be made in or around the house. By doing this, the home will look amazing and all of its features will work to their full potential. If the homeowner is still nervous about hard-to-find damage, they may want to invest in a pre-list inspection. In this process, a professional inspector will analyze every aspect of the home. Afterwards, they inform the owner if there is anything wrong. Getting a pre-listing inspection can also prevent any surprises during the post-listing inspection.

#3 - Strange Smells

Every home has its own unique smell. However, nobody wants to purchase a home that reeks of unpleasant odours. To prevent losing buyers, homeowners should go through their home and clean any particularly smelly areas. This includes drains, wash bins, vents, cooking equipment, carpets and heavily used furniture. By cleaning these aspects of the home, potential buyers will able to admire the house without having to plug their noses.

Although the house selling process may seem like an uphill battle at times, there are ways to make it easier. One of the best things that a homeowner can do is tackle a list of to-dos before putting the house on the market. This includes doing research on other listing prices, making necessary repairs around the house, and getting rid of strange smells in the home. However, these are not all of the issues that need to be dealt with. Homeowners might need to get creative in order to handle their house’s unique issues.

Get in touch to learn more.

The Pros and Cons of a Pre-List Inspection

Are you considering putting your house on the market? Wondering what you should do to increase the value of your home before you list it for sale? A pre-listing inspection presents a great opportunity for both of these things, but weigh out the pros and cons before you commit.

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Pro: You Know Repairs Ahead of Time

Part of the reason a potential buyer will complete an inspection is to decide if there are any repairs that need to be done to the home ahead of purchase. If this is the case, they will likely request the current owner to complete them as a condition of settlement. If you, as the owner, aren’t aware of these issues ahead of time, it can be a costly endeavour to have them fixed. Knowing beforehand the condition of your home makes the requirements more manageable.

Pro: Accurate Pricing

After you have the inspection done it will be much easier for the agent to recommend an accurate price for your home, as they will be able to use the results of the inspection and know what condition the home is in.

Pro: Improve Buyer Confidence

Whenever you can hand a buyer a completed inspection form, and show them that you have put in the effort to make the most of the sale and optimize the property for a new owner, this is good news. This immediately paints you as an honest seller, and helps ease any scepticism the buyer may have about the current condition of the home.

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Con: Added Expense

When you choose to have a home inspection done ahead of listing, you, as the seller have to pay for it (usually). Once you list the property, the inspection costs become the responsibility of the buyer. Given that inspections can cost anywhere from $400 - $800, this may be an added expense you don’t want in an already expensive time.

Con: Disclosure Laws

What if you find something in the inspection that is costly for you to repair and you opt not to repair it? Unfortunately, depending on your location, disclosure laws may require you to disclose all issues to the buyer. If you have money to make the necessary repairs, this will be a non-issue, but if, as above, these are an added expense you are not prepared to deal with, it may in fact hurt your chances of selling or devalue your home by getting the pre listing inspection.

Con: Two Inspections

Don’t assume that you having an inspection done is going to suffice: the buyer will still likely have their own inspection done. For this, you will still be required to go through the buyer’s inspection and discuss the outcomes accordingly.

While the notion of an inspection can be daunting, and it can be hard to know what is the best course of action, working with an experienced real estate agent can help you out a great deal. I would love to offer you my services as an agent and help you navigate all parts of home selling, including inspections. Please get in touch to learn more.

Real Estate Sales to Now Indicate School Catchment Area

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In an unprecedented, but welcome move, Realtor.ca has announced that they will start to add school catchment information to the property listing on their site. In essence, within the information offered about the property that is for sale, there will also be information regarding which school district the home falls under, which is indicative of the school your child would attend should you move to that location.

A long-time important consideration for parents and children when it comes to choosing where to live, the move by Realtor.ca to add this convenience to their site is the first part of a partnership with Local Logic. This partnership will see the addition of neighbourhood-specific lifestyle information on the site’s property listing, with schools being top priority.

Understanding Catchment Area

The catchment area is a geographically bound area, marked by specific GPS coordinates, whereby all children in that area attend a specific elementary, middle, and high school. The students who fall outside the area are listed as attendees of a different school, although with some exceptions, students outside of the area can attend. All schools have a catchment area, affiliated with them, and these may change depending on the number of students the school can take on, as well as how close or far the children live to their home.

Choosing a Home

When it comes to choosing a home, there are a lot of factors to consider, including price, age, location, and neighbourhood. And now, increasing numbers of people are looking at the school catchment areas within that neighbourhood. In fact, many parents are choosing where they would like their child to attend school and then only looking for houses in that area. While this makes sense if you are particularly set on a specific school, be aware that catchment areas change and that if the school is already at capacity, your child may be denied attendance and sent to another school which has more space.

Converting to a Sale

From a real estate agent’s perspective, the addition of this new information is not only available for our clients and to maximize their experience, but it also increases lead conversion. The research has shown that when consumers can interact with neighbourhood data, they are “three times more likely to convert into a lead,” and offer a realtor a chance to pursue a sale.

This is good news for the cities where the information is already offered, including Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Halifax and several other Ontario suburbs. With the plan to have many more integrated into the system within the next month, there are also plans to offer an additional feature which will allow parents to search for a specific school within the catchment area, or search by school type, such as elementary or high school.

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Early interactions indicate strong engagement with the data, with a high degree of interest from consumers, including parents and young children. It is also proving useful for those people indirectly affected, such as future owners wondering about bus routes or school speed routes that may impact their daily commute time.

If you are looking to find a home in a particular school catchment area, please let me know. I am happy to work with you to identify the location that will best suit your family’s needs and allow your children to attend the most fitting school.