Selling in Ottawa Market?
Here are some real life tips of getting your house ready for the Ottawa market:
Making it Ready
1. Get the house ready by fixing anything that requires repair so that it is functional and can be used properly. Example of quick fixes would include broken/cracked tile, dry wall with marks and dents, broken cupboard handle, a not flushing toilet, a dishwasher leak, etc. You want to eliminate anything an inspector will find during the inspection as well, and be ready to disclose any issues.
2. Add any upgrades, updates; this will bring the house value up. E.g. hardwood floor, stainless steel appliance, remember though, it needs to be done strategically. Your realtor will bring in comparables from your neighbourhood to see what upgrades the other houses have. You do not wish to be the least renovated home on the block, nor the most renovated.
3. Have a new look, if you have couches/sofa that are old and torn, perhaps it is a good idea to sell those on the Internet and get brand new ones, not something very large and bulky but something modern and charming, the benefit of it is you will be taking your couches away with you to your new home! Sell that extra couch in the basement and declutter, steam clean your carpets, get some touch up paint, take those personal pictures off the wall and put them in a box, this will give the impression to buyers that you are ready to leave the house. Reduce the amount of wall paintings, ornaments, etc. Leave spaces for the buyers’ imagination.
4. List everything that your house has as a plus, the realtor will listen to you carefully to write the description to attract the most buyers.
5. Go to a open house or show home to get inspired about staging your house, your realtor will also advice you or direct you to a professional service if you need help with this step.
Getting a Realtor
Interview couple of realtors, since a realtor would be able to help you get the most money out of your house and be able to sell it fast for you while saving you some of the risks involved in transactions.
1. Request for a CMA (comparative market analysis) from the realtor that you like so that you have a comparison of how you would price your house in todays market.
2. Price it right for the market, not too low, not too high, that is the key!
3. Keep your house clean and always have it presentable, e.g. keep the toilet lids closed for showings, lights on, heat up or have your A/C running depending on the season with a pleasant temperature, remember to organize your garage, shed, and have a nice curb appeal effect. At the house, keep your valuables in locked places. A well maintained place will always have advantages over the neglected houses. Pay attention to your furnace room, and basement, don’t dump your furniture and unwanted items in the basement, since it will give a negative impression to potential buyers.
4. Request for feedback after each viewing, after all, you go thorough all that effort to show the house!
5. Be prepared for showing some utility bills (hydro, water, gas), property tax bills, land survey, home inspection report; when a buyer is interested, they may request for such documents before putting an offer. You want to be, look and sound confident about the house you are going to sell. The more paperwork you have about the house, the smoother the transaction will be.
Additional Things to Consider
1. Get a real estate lawyer, all your information/money transaction during closing will go through your lawyer, your real estate agent will be able to recommend you one, but it is often a good idea to shop around by asking friends and family.
2. Be prepared for a mortgage discharge penalty if you are ending your mortgage before its due date. The cost may vary but be in touch with your mortgage company, the penalty cost might be something like 3 months interest and interest rate differential.
3. Mortgage Discharge Fee would be also something to consider, most banks charge around 200 – 300 dollars, again your mortgage company will be able to answer all your questions. Be prepared to negotiate with your mortgage provider. The more informed and educated you are about the mortgage market, the less chance for you to loose money.
And give me a call with confidence when you are ready to sell!
Author: Nilay Ertemur