Why isn’t my home selling? 5 Mistakes to Avoid –
By Eleni Akrivos – mtltimes.ca
More than a few years ago, it used to be that in Montreal and surrounding areas, your real estate agent would put up the sign for sale in front of your home, and in a matter of time it was SOLD! What has changed since a couple of years ago? A whole lot of factors have come into play and changed the real estate game! If you have already sold a Montreal property in the past, keep in mind that not only has the market changed, but the buyers themselves are more knowledgeable, thanks to the internet of course.
This year, your home may be sitting on the market longer than you’d like, with few showings and no offers coming in. What is contributing to your home not selling? In my professional opinion there are 5 Main Reasons your home is not selling: 1) Market Conditions 2)Pricing 3) Presentation 4) Marketing 5) Selling on your own.
Much of it has to do with avoiding costly mistakes even before putting up your property for sale. A common mistake is underestimating the importance of understanding the overall Montreal real estate market and looking at the local inventory. In a slowdown, it will naturally take longer to sell, but how do you make sure that you sell? Working with a seasoned real estate broker who can easily explain the current market trends and apply them to your specific property is crucial. Here are the questions you should be asking: Are there more homes for sale and why is that? Do buyers have the upper hand with more to choose from? Is it a buyers or sellers’ market right now? How long are properties taking to actually sell and close? Will my home sell at fair market value?
Answering these questions will give you a good insight as to what is happening at ground level. Anyone who follows the news has probably heard that there is currently an increase in inventory and a decrease in the number of closed sales transactions compared to last year. Now you know that you need a strong action plan so that your property stands out and gets noticed amongst the crowd! Part of my job is to educate Sellers about the competition and how a potential Buyer will size up your home. Avoid being unprepared by having all this information on your side.
Once you are up to date on market conditions, this brings us to the number one mistake sellers often make, which is OVERPRICING. Avoid gauging your Asking Price by looking at what the neighbors are asking. This is the most critical part of putting your home on market, since your property gets the most attention the first two weeks on the market! A Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) is needed. This shows you what has actually SOLD and will determine a competitive Asking Price to get the most buyers through your doors! Avoid having your property linger on the market due to starting off on the wrong foot.
Remember: Your home will SELL at the price a qualified buyer is WILLING to pay in todays’ current market conditions.
Now that your home is priced correctly, then what? It’s time to take the photos and put your home out there! Avoid hiding your homes best features. A sparkling clean house sells fast! You may or may not need the help of one of our expert home stagers. Simply de-cluttering, cleaning and rearranging furniture may do the trick. In some cases small repairs, painting or simple renovations will maximize your profit. Since we work with qualified buyers, we have a keen sense of what they are looking for, and what they are willing to pay top dollar for. Ask your real estate broker about buying trends and what repairs are necessary if any.
Remember: A potential buyer should be able to envision themselves in your home, so avoid a too lived-in look by removing most personal belongings.
Next is the business of MARKETING. “You only have one chance to make a good impression” is the golden rule when selling your home. Avoid the thinking that simply “listing” your home and putting up a sign will make it sell. Every property has positive qualities that need to be showcased to buyers on MLS and CENTRIS websites as well as during visits and Open Houses. A strong marketing plan starts with a real estate broker who has pinpointed the positive selling points of your property, and knows how to capitalize on them. A marketing plan may include professional photos, videos, on line and social media presence among other platforms.
Remember: Work with a broker or agency who will SELL your home, not simply “LIST” it.
Last but not least, we come to my favourite topic of sellers who I have met with often, who feel like they should try to sell on their own to save on the commission. Avoid the trap of “saving on commission”, as statistics show that most qualified buyers prefer to work with a Real Estate Broker to represent their best interest. Unless you are an expert in the field, and have the time to sacrifice on educating yourself, partner up with a professional and sell your home at top dollar.
Remember: These are only the top 5 mistakes, the list goes on and on.
In the current real estate market, you need at least two ingredients for a solid sale: A motivated, serious seller and a motivated, qualified buyer. As a motivated and serious seller, who needs to make a move whether for work or family reasons, you need to team up with a licensed real estate broker you trust, who will help you understand the rules of the new real estate game in Montreal quickly, before your home takes too long to sell.
Eleni Akrivos is a Chartered Real estate Agent and can be reached at 514-999-8888 or by E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org . Also you can look at her website at: www.northeastrealities.com