So you’ve decided to sell your house, now what? It can be a daunting experience for many but with all the tools in your toolbox and with the support of a knowledgeable and experienced realtor on your side, you will have all that you need to make it a smooth and successful process.

Here’s how to get the ball rolling:
First and foremost, interview a realtor, if not a few realtors. Make sure they bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise in your neighbourhood and don’t shy away from asking for their stats too. It’s definitely not all about numbers, but the average agent sells two homes a year! Are they full-time or part-time? And of course, make sure that above all else, you are comfortable with them as they will be representing you and it’s important that you feel confident placing your home in their hands. When interviewing a realtor, be sure to ask what they will do to market your home. We live in a digital world and now more than ever, the home search has spread to social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram where home video tours or listings can garner thousands of views. This exposure is unprecedented and should, ideally, be included in most marketing strategies. It’s also important to ask if they will have professional photos? What about staging? What about print advertising such as neighbourhood ad mail or flyers? How will they communicate feedback from showings to you? You should never wonder what’s going on; why hasn’t my home sold? Kid-glove service all the way!!
Ok, so you’ve selected your realtor, what’s next?
Time to get personal! Your home is a reflection of you, but we need to change that in order to allow potential buyers to be able to visualize themselves living in your home with their own family. Time to declutter, tuck away the personal items and finish the odd jobs that seem to never get done like patching the hole in the wall or de-weeding the garden. Which brings me to my next point – don’t forget curb appeal! From the moment a buyer pulls up, they are already passing judgment on whether they’ll like or love your home. Let your realtor advise you as to whether or not some improvements are necessary to bring you the most in return. Remember, painting alone can bring 275% return in value!! Staging is huge these days but don’t let it overwhelm you. Put it on the shoulders of your realtor – after all, that’s why you’ve hired them. I always recommend breaking things down into manageable tasks that are achievable.
Now the boring but important stuff…paperwork. The listing agreement is the binding contract between you and the agent’s brokerage (not the salesperson) and it’s important that you understand all of what you are signing. The length of the listing period, the commission (plus HST only on the calculated commission based on the selling price) and the co-operating commission which will remunerate the buyer agent who is likely to bring you your offer. Take time to ask questions and be sure to be satisfied with the answers. Property taxes need to be provided as current final along with a existing survey (if you have one). Sometimes it might be necessary to ask your neighbor if you can’t locate one. Otherwise your realtor could ask the town hall. A spare key. Be sure to spell out your requested showing instructions so there are no surprises.
Lastly be sure to explain which items are to remain on the property and will go with the sale of your home. That would cover appliances, window coverings, light fixtures, sheds, shelving units etc. If there’s something you would prefer to keep, you might consider replacing it before you go up for sale because once a buyer sees it they often would like it! Selling is stressful that’s for sure! My role is to eliminate that as much as I possibly can and have it seem less from start to….well there really is no finish cause my clients are for life!

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