This seller information guide will
assist sellers through the selling process
and provide a useful checklist.


If you have Questions that
you would like answered,
please contact me. Steve

Fix it up or Sell it?

Which way do you go? For most people the decision to sell is easy. If you are being transfered to another area, need a bigger home due to a growing family, becoming an empty nester and want to down size, retire to the cottage or have other reasons that require a move, you would begin the process of marketing the house.

For others, it may be a more difficult decision. You like the area you live in but want to make changes to your present home. The problem is, it may not be worth spending a lot of money which could make it over priced for the area. You may need to involve a contractor to give you a quote and a REALTOR® to evaluate the changes and help you determine the market value when the changes are made.

More often then not, the changes people want to make go beyond what is reasonable for the market and the house becomes over priced making it more difficult to compete with similar properties should the dicision to be sell come along. If the upgrades fall within the values of homes in the area and they are the changes you want, the decision would be to make the changes and stay.

However, if the changes take you beyond the market, consider the latter and begin the process of putting the house on the market. If that is the decision, the information below will help you through the selling process.

Do's and Don'ts

Don’t over price the property.
Over priced listings will cause stress, create more expense, cause a loss of equity and help others to sell theirs first.

Don’t be fooled by what others think.
Properties are valued differently by many people. Bank appraisers, tax assessors, lending institutions and others, all place a different value on a property. In the end it is what someone is willing to pay for a property at this time.

Use the right REALTOR®.
Make sure the REALTOR® you choose will work in your best interest. Have the property listed on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®). This is a shared service between Real Estate companies. You will have the advantage of 600 REALTORS®, most with clients that may be interested in your property. Other types of real estate service have marketing restrictions that may not surface until it’s to late to change.

Don’t take Market conditions for granted.
A hot market doesn’t mean a house will sell nor does a soft market mean the house won’t sell. Our MLS® System tracks all MLS® listings and sales. They happen virtually every day. A property that is priced right and showable in any type of market will most likely sell in a reasonable period of time.

Don’t limit your opportunities.
Make sure your listing is exposed to the market to create opportunities to attract a buyer. A sign on the lawn, normal print ads and the MLS® System will ensure the property has maximum exposure to the market place. A companies reputation and brand name are important factors. With such high exposure to the public, buyers and sellers are attracted to them. High volumes of listings and sales and a professional team go a long way in bringing potential buyers to the table.

Sell or Buy First

What should you do? Buy a home first before putting your house on the market or Sell before buying a new home? Most sellers run into this problem trying to decide what to do. Below are some Pros and Cons:

Deciding to buy first may not be the way to go. If you find a property that you like and make an offer on it, you will most likely have to make it conditional upon selling your present home. The seller will continue to market that property and if they get another accepted offer, you will have 6 to 24 hours to firm up the deal. If your house hasn’t sold yet and you can’t afford to carry 2 properties until it does, you will lose the deal.

Deciding to put your house on the market first is, in most cases, the way to go. The ideal situation is to have your property and the new purchase both close at the same time. While your house is being marketed, you would begin the process of searching for your new home. Your REALTOR® will provide you with updates on available properties and you will be ready to go when the time is right.

Once you have a firm offer on your house, you can then make an offer on the new one without having it conditional upon selling the present house. In some cases the home you want to buy comes along before you have an offer on your house. Depending on market conditions and the activity on yours, you may make an offer on the new one in hopes that yours will sell quickly. This offer will be conditional upon you selling yours, similar to buying first.

With your house on the market first, you will have a better idea of market conditions and be able to determine when the time is right to make that offer.

Prepare to Sell

First impressions are lasting ones. Make sure your house is ready to show when an appointment to view is made. Your REALTOR® will provide you with a check list of things that will help to attract a buyer. The check list will identify the most common things that bother or hamper a buyer’s decision. Cosmetic things like paint touch ups, oiling squeaky hinges, replacing burnt out lights, carpet stains, leaky faucets and other similar items play on peoples minds. Odors and stuffed closets all create impressions.

Determine Asking Price

Having the right asking price for your house is very important. Ideally, a home should be priced to sell within 30 days. A home that is over priced will be on the market for a long time, raising questions like, “What’s wrong with it?” or “They want too much money?”. The seller must pay the expenses to maintain the property along with extra mortgage payments. A house that is priced 5% over true value will sell far quicker than one that is 10% or more over true value. Being on the market to long will likely bring in less than true value due to the discount that is associated with a lenghty listing period.

Typically, there are 4 main factors why a house doesn’t sell during the initial listing period:

Market Conditions

Although all of the above are major factors, over pricing is normally the reason why houses don’t sell in a reasonable period of time. Most often they help the competition to sell their houses first. Having a market analysis done on the property will help to ensure that the house is priced right. Most buyers want to negotiate a deal. If the property is priced right there is very little room to negotiate. Buyers will have the same market information that the seller has and they know what the property is worth and tend to be more reasonable when making an offer as opposed to the offering on an over priced listing where both sides are frustrated and most often the deal falls apart.