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How to avoid key mistakes when selling your home (so you get a better return)

“Always pick your yard based on your Summer lifetstyle.”


May 28, 2018 - Karl Yeh

Planning to sell your home? What are the key mistakes you must avoid so you can get a better return? In this episode, we discuss some pivotal mistakes people make when selling their home and the role of your real estate agent (if using one). We also explore how to keep your house clean while your home is on the market, and how much of your home should be shown to prospective buyers. 

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Karl Yeh:

Hi everyone and welcome to another edition of Homebuyer's School and today I'm joined by Eddy D'Ambrosio, a real estate agent with RE/MAX Elite.

Today, the question we're going to answer is [00:00:30]:

What are some mistakes people make when selling their home?

Eddy, you've had a lot of clients, what are some of the mistakes that you've seen people make in terms of selling homes?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

I think the first one is when you hire a real estate agent, you sit down and discuss strategy, pricing, and the process through selling your home how you will prepare your home for showings.

Listen to your realtor. Take that [00:01:00] advice.

I think the first point here is pricing.

There's so much discussion that goes around how to price your property, what's the best price to list at.

When you have that discussion with your realtor, be really clear on understanding the best price to go forward with and just you have to be able to have trust in you realtor in knowing that that strategy is going to work out. [00:01:30]

Sometimes, pricing your property too high is a huge mistake that a lot of people make.

They think well, we'll start at a higher price point and then maybe we'll just work down ...

Karl Yeh:                              Our way down.

Eddy D'Ambrosio:            ... After that. In fact, that's one of the biggest mistakes and most common mistakes that sellers make.

Karl Yeh:                             

Besides pricing, anything in terms of the visual aspect of your home, like [00:02:00] upkeep or renovations [inaudible 00:02:02]?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

Yeah. Cleanliness is next to godliness.

One of the biggest things that any seller can do with their property is make sure it's the cleanest that it has ever been anytime someone's coming to look through your home.

Again, I think a good real estate agent is going to sit down with their seller client and have a discussion surrounding cleanliness, staging, and really paying attention to all of the senses that a buyer has when [00:02:30] touring through your home.

How are they being visually stimulated with colors and furniture placement?

Going room by room to determine how does my furniture fit in this room and does it make the room feel big, does it make the room feel small? Another thing to be conscious of is smells.

 If you have pets in the home, this is a big one I see with buyers all the time.

We go touring through some homes and [00:03:00] you can smell that pet odor. For my sellers, we discuss pets and how they affect showings.

For some people, they choose to have a pet stay with a family member or even go into a boarding house for that time when they're selling the property just so that you are with every showing putting your best foot forward.

Karl Yeh:                             

Now to make the house feel more natural, would you maybe leave your pictures up or completely take them down?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

[00:03:30] Well, this is always a sensitive one especially with families and you go through a seller's home and say take all the pictures of your kids down.

To some degree, I think maybe depersonalizing a little bit, a lot of people love that show home look, so the better you could do to make your home feel like a show home, have things staged a little bit and yeah depersonalizing can absolutely can help. [00:04:00]

That's another thing to be conscious of when you're selling a home is how much personal information do you have out there, do you have pictures of your family and your kids, and some people are comfortable with that and some aren't.

How to keep your house clean while selling

Karl Yeh:                             

Isn't it tough to live in a home that you're trying to sell though? If you continuously keep it clean, which is fine, but I mean you eventually have to live there. Is there any tips on how to avoid ruining your [00:04:30] house too much or using too much and to make sure that it looks right for the buyers?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

Yeah. It is challenging.

It's tricky when you do want to become almost minimalist when you're selling.

You want to declutter.

What I suggest to clients is as you're getting ready to list, also get ready to move.

If your intention is to sell that property and move on, then get some early packing done, declutter, get some stuff [00:05:00] put away, some totes and some boxes nicely organized away is a great way to do that.

Yeah, it can be tricky to start living with a little bit less around and every day having to clean and be ready for people to look at your home. It's definitely a lot of work.

But done right, that's where your home shows really well and then hopefully that whole process doesn't have to last a long time.

Karl Yeh:                             

Can [00:05:30] you maybe block off a certain portion of your home or do you really want to make sure the entire house is accessible for people to view?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

Both are fine.

You want to be able to show someone who's spending such a large amount of money on a property, you want to be able to show the full home and all of its features.

For some sellers, they may have a room that's inaccessible and [00:06:00] that's ...

Karl Yeh:                              That's okay.

Eddy D'Ambrosio:            ... And that's fine.

Karl Yeh:                             

Besides staging your home and besides price point, any other mistakes people make when selling you a home or things that they should know?

Eddy D'Ambrosio:           

I think just trust your realtor. Hire someone that's going to really put a lot of work into marketing your home.

Develop a strategy ahead of time and make sure that you have a really clear dialog over the best way to [00:06:30] approach the sale of your property and then really just have trust and execute that strategy and I think you will have a recipe for success.

Karl Yeh:                             

Perfect. Well, thank you very much, Eddy. Thank you very much, everyone, for joining us and we'll catch you next time.

Recommended Watch

So of our other videos that you may be interested in watching related to this topic are:

Best home improvements to make before selling your home

How to get your house ready to sell

Real estate commissions: How do realtors get paid in Canada?

When is the best time of year to sell your home?


Your turn:

Let us know if you have additional home selling or home buying questions that we can answer by submitting them in the comments section below. 

Homebuyer's School publishes new content weekly so subscribe or check back regularly for the latest information, strategies and tips from homebuying experts. 

About Eddy D'Ambrosio:

My experience in the real estate industry started in 2010 selling homes for one of  Edmonton's largest new home builders. With over 150 homes sold, I learned what it takes to sell homes in both a busy and a slow market. In all of my years selling homes I was a top producer and in 2014 I received the A.C Westman Award for both Top Sales and Customer Service Ranking which is the highest honour. The skills I learned working in the New home Industry transfer over to general real estate in a big way and make me a huge asset to have on both the selling side of a transaction and the buyers side.

My message to those looking to sell a home today is that my experience and expertise is in understanding the people I'm selling for and the people I'm selling to, understanding the product or property that I'm working with, and developing a creative and effective strategy that will get us top dollar for your home. I enjoy the unique challenge and opportunity that comes with each individual property and I don't work with a one size fits all approach so contact me when you are ready to meet and work together to put together the best strategy for you and your home.

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