Category Archives: Seller Questions

10 Mistakes Condo Sellers Make

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Everyday I see mistakes that sellers make, here is a list of 10 that are typical and can cost a seller thousands of dollars.

1:  Price

  • Overpricing your condo is the biggest mistake a seller can make.  You will likely still get showings, but the people coming to see your condo usually have higher expectations and will  just be disappointed in your condo.  When you do eventually lower your price, your listing will be stale and buyers will have less interest and you could end up getting less money than if you had priced it properly to begin with.

2:  Showing Availability

  • When you are selling your condo, you need to allow showings at the maximum amount of times, once you start restricting times for showings, you are making it difficult for the buyer to see the condo and they will likely skip it or find another similar property they like before coming back to see yours.  I know it can be very inconvenient for you, but you are trying to sell your place and hopefully it will sell quickly and the inconvenience will be over quickly.

3:  Cluttered/Cleanliness 

  • Nothing turns off a buyer quicker than walking into a dirty or cluttered condo.  If you have lots of stuff, take out as much as you can, put it into storage or get rid off it, either way, clear out as much of it as possible.  Next. the cheapest improvement you can make is investing in cleaning supplies, give the kitchen and bathroom a good cleaning, make them shine.  Dirty and cluttered condos turn buyers off.  More about professional cleaning.

4:  Not Willing to Negotiate 

  • You always want to negotiate.  I understand that it can come as a shock when you get a really low offer, just remember that the first offer is only the potential buyer raising their hand to say they are interested.  Don’t take offence to a low offer, sign it back at a price you are willing to accept.  You might be surprised when they come back with a much more realistic offer the second time.  You could be losing your best chance to get your price by refusing to work with someone who makes what you feel is a bad offer.

5:  Pets/Odors

  • I know you love your little friends, but when your selling your condo, a lot of people do not like pets and are turned off that they live there, While your selling your home, you should try and arrange for them to stay with family or friends until the sale is completed.  Also you want to deodorize the apartment, maybe even paint to get rid of any smells.

6:  Complete Repairs

  • I regularly see things in listings saying easy to fix, or easy to convert back.  If it is easy you should just do it, as buyers, especially with condos are not normally looking for a project.  Also, if you have easy repairs to do, i.e. new outlet covers and stuff like that, just finish it, you don’t want the buyer thinking what else needs to be done that they are not seeing.

7:  Bad Photos

  • This is my pet peeve, I hire a professional photographer for my listings, there is no excuse for bad listing photos.  Those photos taken with your camera phone are not getting people in your door.  They are keeping potential buyers away because your photos are not showing off the best features of your property.  You only get one chance at a first impression, do it professionally.  More on Professional Photos.

8:  Hiring A Part Time REALTOR®

  • There are 38,000 plus members of the Toronto Real Estate Board, the majority of them work part time.  When you are selling your largest asset, you need someone who is available to deal with situations or inquiries as they come.  Real Estate can be a 24/7 business, how is your part time REALTOR® going to deal with the 9-5 stuff if they are at work and unavailable when you need them.

9:  Hiring A Family REALTOR®

  • I have heard in the past of clients deciding to work with a family member who has now gotten their real estate registration.  I am sure many people have experienced REALTOR® family members, however many are new to the business or part time.  Think about this, will they be willing to tell you what you need to hear or are they afraid to hurt your feelings and ruin the relationship.

10:  Over Doing Home Improvements.

  • Just because you spent a lot of money to put in the new kitchen and bathroom for your resale, doesn’t mean a buyer is going to pay for it.  You have to mindful of your budget, you can put in top of the line things, just don’t surprised if the buyer is not willing to pay the extra money for the upgrades you have done.  Also, your upgrades may not appeal to all buyers, so watch your budget and do neutral improvements to maximize your investment.  Maybe consult a home stager or designer before spending a lot of money.

Steven

Fill in the form below for a free no-obligation condo evaluation.

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Closing Costs For Selling Your Property

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Selling your property can be a very exciting time.  There will be costs involved in the process and being prepared ahead of time will help relieve the stress and shock.  Here are the typical costs involved in closing the sale of your property.  This is not a complete list, there could be others, this list covers the typical expenses.

1:  Mortgage Balance

  • On closing you are required to pay any outstanding amount remaining on the mortgage, which is deducted from the funds received by your lawyer from the buyer’s lawyer.

2: Mortgage Penalties and Charges

  • You could have a fee to port your mortgage, a fee to break your mortgage early and other possible fees include paying for an appraisal or to discharge your mortgage.  Check with your mortgage provider to find out your fees before you sell so you won’t have any surprises.

3:  Status Certificate (Condo)

  • The status certificate is a legal document you need to provide to the buyer during the sale of your condo.  A status certificate costs $100 and is generally at the seller’s expense.  If you have hired me as your REALTOR®, I pay for the status certificate.

4:  Taxes

  • You have to pay off any unpaid property taxes.

5:  Real Estate Commission

6:  Legal Fees 

  • You will need a lawyer to close the transaction, I cannot speak for lawyers and what they charge, depending on the services required, you should budget between $800 to $1500.

7:  Moving/ Cleaning.

  • You are responsible for moving out of the property, you might need to hire movers, also depending on your agreement of purchase and sale, you might need to have the property professionally cleaned.

8:  HST

  • HST is applicable on all professional services you require, including real estate fees, legal fees, movers and cleaners.

 

Steven

Fill in the form below for No-Obligation Home Evaluation.

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Condo Seller Information: For Sale By Owner On The MLS, The Mere Posting

It has been a couple of years now since the rules for our Multiple Listing Service, or MLS have changed to allow consumers who wish to sell there home without using the services of a REALTOR®, post there listing on the MLS by hiring an agent just for the purpose listing it for sale on the MLS and then having buyer agents contact the owner directly.  These listings are referred to as “Mere Postings”.  The seller then can sell the property on their own to their own buyer, or choose to co-operate with a buyer agent.

To post your listing, you will hire a Real Estate Brokerage that provides the service for a flat fee.  The brokerage will then broker load the property to the MLS along with the sellers contact information.  If an agent has a buyer for your type of property, they will contact you directly to arrange a showing and compensation should their client purchase your home.

The brokerage that I am part of does not offer Mere Postings as a Service.  This is something that I support, I do not feel that just posting your listing on the MLS is a good plan.  There is more to selling your home than just the MLS, I also don’t believe most agents will show your Mere Posting.

Steven

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Condo Seller Information: Get Your Home Professionally Cleaned Before Selling!

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I regularly get asked what improvements can I make before listing my condo for sale?  Condos typically are not that large compared to a house, with one bedroom condos ranging under 600 square feet.  Buyers have a easy time looking for signs that condo is not well maintained.  The most cost effective thing to improve how your home shows  is  to give it a really thorough cleaning.

You can clean your home yourself, but I think it is best to hire a professional cleaner to come in and clean your property.  They will make it shine and ready to show to its potential.  Then all you will need to do is maintain it.  If your going to sell your home, do yourself a favour and hire a professional to clean it.

Steven

Fill in the form for a No Obligation Home Evaluation.

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Condo Seller Information: The MLS is a Tool, Not a Marketing Plan

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With over40,000 REALTORS® in the Toronto Real Estate Board, when you decide to sell your property, you want your listing to be placed on the MLS for those REALTORS® to see and send to their clients.  When your property is loaded on the MLS, it is also submitted to the public MLS which is know as REALTOR.ca to maximize the listings exposure.  This is a a very important tool in any home selling plan.

As important to selling a home as the MLS is, it is still just one tool within a marketing plan available to REALTORS®.   There are many aspects of marketing your home, some are promotional, such as open houses, on-line advertising, social media, agent to agent networking, videos and more.  Then there are aspects to enhance the listing such as a virtual tour, professional photography, professional laser measurements and floor plans.  All of these things are part of the selling process, each are important tools, that all work together to maximize the selling price of your home.  Just posting your listing on the MLS without the rest of the tools working together is a plan in having your home become  an expired listing.

Yes the MLS is a very important tool, but it is still just a tool within  a portfolio of tools to maximize the selling of your home .

Steven

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Do I Really Need Professionally Taken Photos to Sell My Toronto Condo?

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As I write this post, on the Toronto MLS area’s C01 to C15, so all the Central districts, there are 2430 Condo Apartments listed for sale.  This doesn’t include condo town homes or co-op apartments or any that are sold conditionally.

Professionally taken photos showcase a property in the best possible light. Since most buyers search on-line, Photos and Price are the determining factors whether a buyer decides to visit the property. Photos can also be the determining factor for why a REALTOR® sends out your listing or brings his/her client to view your Condo for sale.

With all the competition in the market place, professionally taken photos are needed to make your Condo stand out from the crowd.

Steven

Fill in form below for a No Obligation Home Evaluation.

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Toronto Condo Sellers: We’re Looking

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Are you thinking about selling your Toronto Condo?  Well, you better put away those rare collectibles,  hide that massive CD collection,  pack away that big DVD collection.  Take down those family photos.  It’s time to take away all those things that makes your condo home, Because we’re coming.  Once you put your property up for sale, buyer agents and their clients will be visiting your property and even though we are there to find a home to purchase, clients end up spending a lot of time looking at your DVD collection and family photos rather than envisioning how they could live in your home.  Help make each showing a good one, depersonalize your condo, put away the family mementos and pack away all your personal stuff, in the end you will be helping your own cause.

Steven

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation

Toronto Real Estate Questions Answered: What is the Standard Commission?

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There really isn’t a Standard Real Estate Commission in Toronto.  The word Standard Commission is a real no no.  That goes against competition laws.  Each individual REALTOR® sets their own commission.  Things to remember:

  • Don’t worry about how much you are paying your agent.

  • You should be more interested in what your agent is going to do for you.

  • Some REALTORS® charge a typical commission and then offer part of that commission the buyer agent.

  • Some offer a flat rate for the listing and a flat rate for the buyer.

  • You should interview your potential REALTORS® and make an informed decision as to who you wish to work on.

  • Don’t make your big decision based on commission alone.

Steven

Visit the Commission Page for more information.

Steven Campbell, Sales Representative
Forest Hill Real Estate Inc., Brokerage

Free Home Evaluation