This week, a question came up from a friend as we were talking about the real estate market in Calgary, which is a little battered and bruised. They asked, "What does it actually take to get your house sold in this market?"
Well, to be honest, this market is no different than any other market. We tell our clients and home sellers that there really are only 4 Ingredients to Sell Your Home.
1. Prep and Presentation: This is getting your home ready for the market. It's extremely important, and the more time you spend on this phase, the more money you make. It means preparing your home for the camera lens. We live in the digital world. Your first showing is not when someone comes through the door, it's when someone clicks on your property on a website. We need to make it look so amazing that it convinces people to get off the couch and come see the house in person. Photos and video are the keys. Taking more time to declutter, decorate, repair damages, paint (remember, with HD photography bright wall colours come out twice as bright in photos, and dark colours twice as dark. As cool as your red bathroom looks in person, it's a massive turn off in photos), and deep clean your home so it looks its best will pay dividends. We guide you through this process as part of the home selling plan.
2. Marketing: This is where I come in. It's my job to get your home in front of as many people as possible. Just putting up a for sale sign and throwing the house on realtor.ca doesn't work. We write compelling advertisements for your home that feature the benefits and unique features that make your house exclusive. We then put into place our marketing strategy that includes 18 different programs to get your home on hundreds of websites, in front of our 3000+ person qualified buyer database, sent out to thousands of realtors who have buyers, and get all the eyeballs on it we can.
3. Pricing Strategy: The crucial decision. How do you price your home? We feel that pricing is a strategy, it's never a one-time event because the market changes every day. You need to be on top of what is happening not only in your neighbourhood, but in the city as far as sales trends and results go. You can't set it and forget it. Buyers are savvy...they have all the information that you do and are looking for the best value for the money. They also are like sheep.... they follow the crowd. After about 3 weeks on the market, if your home hasn't sold, or if you haven't reacted to the current market conditions, buyers start to miss your home online. It becomes white noise. They start thinking (and we have actually heard this dozens of times) "What is wrong with that place if it hasn't sold yet? If no one else wants it, why would I?" Your pricing strategy has to be focused on how buyers buy, and their psychological reactions to your property. You can decipher a lot about your price buy monitoring your online clicks vs. your actual showings. This is something we do every week and report the results back to our sellers. We can then adjust the price based on the feedback we have gotten, and the state of the market at that moment. As a seller, you need to detach yourself from "I need to get this much money." That isn't how the market works. You are at the mercy of what a buyer is willing to pay today...if you can't do that, you shouldn't put your home on the market. The clock starts ticking on the desirability of your home the second it goes on the market. You have a short window to catch a buyer's attention. If you don't, your neighbour that is a better value will sell first, and that directly affects your market value. Time on market = less money in your pocket. We build a suggested pricing map into our home sale plans so that we are always ahead of the market. We read, react, rinse, repeat.
4. Teamwork: The realtor you choose and you the home seller need to remember you are on the same team. You are all working on a common goal, which is to get the best possible results for the home seller. A good real estate professional has sold hundreds of homes and has a lot of knowledge and experience to lean on. Most home sellers only ever sell 3 or fewer homes in their lives. That is a pretty small sample size to consider yourself an expert. Major corporations all hire consultants to help them see the big picture....and that is what real estate pros do for you...consult you through the process so you make the best decisions you can. There are thousands of nuances in every real estate deal that are different than the last and a good realtor will help you navigate those. Things may have changed in the market since you last sold a home as well, so your expectations may be incorrect for the current state of the economy. Trust your realtor. That's why you are hiring them. They have the experience and knowledge for you to lean on. If you can't trust the person you hired, and they aren't being a consultant to you, fire them, and go hire someone who will.
Just like baking, you can't leave out an ingredient or the cake doesn't turn out. Selling your home is exactly the same. Focus on these 4 items, and you will have a much better experience selling your home.
Do you or anyone you know want to buy a home, or sell their house for More Money, In Less time, With Way Less Hassle? Let us know, or pass their name and number on to us, and we'll be sure to follow up and take awesome care of them. Our number is 403 207 1748, and you can email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.