How Do I Sell My House?

“How do I sell my house?” many clients ask prospective real estate agents in the Toronto area. With all the steps involved in the selling process, it can be easy to forget one or two, which can have ripple effects throughout the rest of the process. Fortunately, with a quality agent, you are in a better position to avoid later issues.

Sell My House: 7 Critical Steps

Selling your home is an involved process that is easier with a professional’s experience. If you do not yet have a real estate agent, that should be where you start.

1. Enlist the Assistance of a Real Estate Agent

There are several ways to find a real estate agent who knows the local market. For example, you can seek referrals from neighbours, co-workers, and friends you trust. See whose for sales signs are in your area. Once you have a shortlist, check them out online and search reviews and professional designations. Some agents specialize in niches that you might need.

If you’re thinking about selling your home on your own, expect the process to be longer and more complicated. Realtors earn their dues by getting the news of your home sale to the widest pool of agents and buyers possible, negotiating high-quality offers, marketing your home in person and digitally, handling closing details, and much more.

2. Discuss the Timeline With Your Agent

Suppose you want to sell your home in the next four months. Tell your agent that, and discuss how doable it is and the moves you should take in the meantime. Common steps before selling include:

  • Decluttering and deep cleaning
  • Getting repairs completed
  • Moving some belongings to a temporary storage unit if needed
  • Performing relatively low-cost improvements such as painting the walls a neutral color, sprucing up the yard, and installing new carpet

Your agent likely will take professional photos to begin to market the house. They may also recommend a pre-sale inspection to identify potential issues and then later stage the house for buyers.

If your agent thinks you should get an optional pre-inspection report, do it. Inspectors assess your home’s structure, systems, and appliances to pinpoint possible red flags that could hold up a sale. Prioritize the problems and repairs the home inspector identifies. 

3. Run Any Decisions by Your Agent First

It’s critical that you and your real estate agent remain on the same page. For example, if you proceed with a kitchen renovation project without informing your agent, that could backfire. Sometimes kitchen renovations do deliver a high return on investment and may be worthwhile. However, they take time and money and might not be necessary from an agent’s perspective. 

Your agent is on top of real estate trends in the GTA area and can identify any necessary home improvements to maximize return on investment. For example, your agent may recommend basic tactics such as replacing the doors and hardware on old cabinets for a more modern look.

If the housing inventory in the area is low and buyer demand is high, home renovations may not be necessary at all. Your home may be in demand and command good money no matter what.

4. Keep the House Presentable

Minimize messes, clutter, and smelly odors when your house is on the market. Identify obstacles to doing this so you can find workarounds. For instance, if you work long hours and have three senior cats, you could hire a pet sitter to stop by the house midday to scoop the litter box and check on the cats.

Your agent is likely to have plenty of ideas and solutions, so don’t be embarrassed or afraid to discuss any hurdles to keeping your house as presentable as possible. Ask your agent, “What can I do to help you sell my house?”

5. Stay Out of Prospective Buyers’ Way

Buyers like the freedom to breathe in homes for sale and to envision themselves in the space. If you do not leave the house and stick close to them, you could be derailing your home sale efforts. Your real estate agent can answer any questions buyers have. You can always leave detailed notes for buyers to consult, too.

6. Price Fairly From the Start

Some home sellers figure there is no harm in setting an exorbitantly high price at the beginning, thinking, “I want to sell my house for as much money as I can.” They’re curious to see if anyone bites, which would mean more money for the sellers.

In reality, potential buyers get turned off by prices that are unfairly high. This happens even if the market is tight and sellers have the upper hand. It is usually better to price properly from the start and let potential buyers bid among one another and raise the price themselves if it comes to that.

It does not look good if you set the price so high you have to lower it every few months. It throws your timeline off course, for one thing, and makes it appear that something might be wrong with the home. Why else would it be sitting for so long?

To set a fair price, real estate agents run neighborhood comps, among other things. The comps detail home sale prices and other critical data about the properties in your neighborhood.

7. Consider Offers Carefully

You don’t always want to jump at the first offer that comes your way, even if it is for the asking price or even above. As agents will tell you, the top factors to consider alongside the offer include the type and form of the buyer’s financing, the down payment amount, and the proposed closing date. It is not uncommon for deals to fall through due to shaky financing, for example.

Sell My House in Toronto, Mississauga, Oakville, or Burlington

Tsuji Real Estate specializes in client-centric real estate services. We work with a variety of residential buyers and sellers across Greater Toronto. Contact us today to discuss, “How can I sell my house?”



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