Seven Costly Mistakes When Selling Your Home

For years I have been listing and selling houses and condos in downtown Toronto. Some times, no matter what you do to market the property, it does not sell. WHY?? Recently I was at the National Association of Realtors® Conference in Orlando Florida and sat in on a course called "Why Deals Fall Apart" by my friend and mentor Adorna O. Carroll. Adorna has a very forthright and succinct teaching style and know hows to get right to the issue. Here is some of her thoughts and my explanations of the "Seven Costly Mistakes When Selling Your Home".

  1. The home is on the market prematurely: These days buyers are infected with HGTV syndrome and have little to no imagination. Any physical issues should have been dealt with...if you have an old furnace but you are going to be asking a high dollar, you may want to replace it. If there are tenants in the house who are not known for their neatness, you may want to wait till they vacate...
  2. Over improving for the area: You may have added all the "Bells and Whistles" that you needed to have in the property but if that makes your home the most improved for the area, selling may be a big challenge. Waiting to find that one person who will understand and pay you for your upgrades may have you waiting for years.
  3. Pricing based on the Seller net: Often times the reason for selling is so that the Seller can get what they feel is necessary for the next stage in their life and may have nothing to do with the value of the house. I often have a seller tell me what they must have to sell and although I am sympathetic to that reasoning, it often has no bearing on the property's value and will get in the way of reality.
  4. Being emotionally involved: Sometimes, especially in the case of a divorce or death, the property becomes symbolic of loss and the sellers lose perspective and do not deal with reality or get caught up in a fixture or a chattel that can easily be replaced or may not transfer well to a future property...
  5. Not disclosing problems: Trust can be lossed when factors that may affect the value of the property have not been disclosed and are found out at a later date. These may be factors that have been corrected and because of that, the Sellers feel it is not imperative to disclose, however, always disclose any issue that you are aware of and any follow up that you have done.
  6. Not knowing current issues or market conditions: Sellers often base their asking prices on the listing prices that they feel are comparable rather than the sale prices. Then they often point to properties that have undersold even when they were just market value. They view the lack of activity on property as being symptomatic of a lower market rather than the reality that their price may be over market.
  7. Hiring an agent based on non-business factors: Sellers often choose the wrong agent basing it on the cost solely rather than the services provided and the knowledge of the market place. Earlier this year someone who I had been showing and advising, bought and sold through another Realtor® telling me that although "They trusted me...but they liked them".

If you can stay away from these mistakes and hire a Realtor® based on market knowledge and a commitment to act on your best interests, you will be well served and success will be yours.

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