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How to get your house ready to sell?

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


January 22, 2018 - Karl Yeh

Planning to sell your home? Where do you get started? What are the steps to get your house ready for potential buyers to see and visit? In this episode, we discuss the process Realtor Kevin French uses with his clients to ensure they sell their home fast and for the most return. We explore how homeowners can help with the marketing and how to maintain a show home like environment while the home is on the market. 

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Karl Yeh:

Hi everyone and welcome to a new addition of Homebuyer's School.Today I'm joined by Kevin French with Remax Realty and the question we're going to answer today is,

What is the best way to sell my home  and what is the process or the steps required to sell my home?

Kevin French:                       

Steps required vary on who you decide to work with but I'm going to go over my steps because I think that they are pretty good.

Karl Yeh:                                   Okay.

Kevin French:              

1. Designers prep the home          

Step [00:00:30] one before listing the property is I have my designer go into the home, she meets with the homeowners and she goes through and preps the property for sale with them.

Might be there for an hour and a half, sometimes three and a half hours, and then she goes through and says, get rid of this, change that, that art is too bright, make it more neutral, repaint that wall, potentially change that furniture out.

She tries to work with what they have so that we're not increasing the cost for the seller but, then they can make small changes [00:01:00] around the property to make it show in its best light.

Essentially trying to make it look like a show home.       

2. House is professionally measured        

So, that's one, then after the property is prepped and the sellers have taken their time to do whatever they needed to do, then we have it professionally measured so that it's being appropriately marketed and not deceiving and it's being marketed at its largest square footage and we're not under marketing it to some extent.

3. Professional photography of home

That also, at the same time we do the photography, the photographer goes through, it's all professional photography.

Depending on the type of the property, [00:01:30] if it's a darker home, we will shoot it during the day. If it's a lighter home, then we have the option to, depending on the time of the year, we'll shoot twilight.

That ranges when sun's going down, sometimes it's 11:00 at night when we're in the summer but then the property shows and stands out from all its competition in the area.

4. House listed on MLS and marketed online 

Once the property is on the market, it's listed on MLS, then we have online marketing, of course, boosted social media, includes Instagram and Facebook and then we have re-targeted marketing as well.

The property will create [00:02:00] a little ad that will show up on Global news,, whatever it may be.

Various sites that when you Google properties like Calgary Auburn Bay, Calgary Citadel, whatever area it may be, then houses within that area will ... it'll just continuously pop up on there on Facebook.

Karl Yeh:                                  

Just for people who don't know, re-targeting is people who go to a specific website, if you re-target, often people who go to the websites they'll see the ad on various other different platforms [00:02:30] for things that you've seen.

You've probably seen it on Amazon.

If you were looking at a new pair of shoes, that pair of shoes, you might see that on different platforms, whether it's on Facebook or whether you're navigating through the web too.

Any other steps?

Kevin French:                       

Now the property is live and it's being appropriately marketed, now we go to, of course:

  • there's a for sale sign on the property,
  • open houses are up to the seller, obviously, we encourage one or two [00:03:00] but not one every weekend and
  • then we obtain the feedback, which is one of the most important things for the selling process and monitor the competition.

What you listed, when you review the competition, you listed it at X price on day one, day fourteen, four more properties may be the exact same, just listed for significantly less.

You have to monitor that and adjust but also work with the feedback.

What does the home owner do while the house is being marketed? What are some of the things that they can do to help?

Kevin French:                       

Everything our designer says.

Keep the house in show ready condition.

We often have buyers come through and ask if the property is vacant.

No, it's not.

The sellers actually live there, we've just prepared ... we've made it look like this so that you're not getting caught up, you're not walking through the home and looking at personal photos, which is number one that always comes up.

You're not looking at someone's trip to [00:04:00] Cuba, you're not looking at their extremely bright and potentially aggressive art that is taking your attention away.

We want to keep it neutral and we want people to walk through the home and look at the home. That's what they're there to look at, not personal things.

Karl Yeh:                                  

How is that for the person who currently living in the home? That's a little tough because they still have to use the house.

Kevin French:                        They do.

So it's a little tough to keep the house in that condition while at the same time living in the house.

Kevin French:                       

[00:04:30] It's a lot of work but, I tell my clients when they're struggling with that, we have two options:

  1. we can do that and sell sooner for more money or,
  2. we can just reduce the price and you don't have to take care of anything.

Karl Yeh:                                   Just kind of ...

Kevin French:                       

It's just ... it's very blunt but it makes it ... it's a stark reality that if I just do this I might make ten thousand more dollars, maybe I should just do that. It has worked though, no doubt about it.                   

Is it always a recommendation maybe to have the person selling the house live somewhere else?

Did that help or is ... maybe for other people it won't be, it might not be ...

Kevin French:                       

No, that might be extreme but, I had a case recently where ... which, every property that's listed is unique to itself so the selling process is also molded, so what I've just explained isn't necessarily what everybody would get. T

his property was a slightly older home, older furniture, parts of the home were vacant because the children [00:05:30] had moved out, so I decided to ... and they had the option and they were intending on moving out, so I said, just move everything out and we virtually staged the property.

The photographer's still shoots it but then they add the furniture in every single room so that someone can see how the space can be utilized, 'cause that's something that a lot of people have a hard time getting past.

They walk through the home and they can't imagine where their TV's gonna go or how their sofa's gonna fit in here, how the dining room table's going to work.

By virtually staging it, it goes incredibly well online, but then when they get there and the furniture's not there, [00:06:00] the seller didn't incur the cost of two, twenty-five hundred, three thousand dollars a month to physically staging but yet the buyer still has the photos and they can see how it's going to be used.

Karl Yeh:                                   Yeah. Any other steps?

Kevin French:                       

It varies. When something needs to be done, we do it. If someone is out the country, for example, some recent clients, we go by and we clean the floors after there's a showing.

We hire cleaners for properties that may need it because the person has [00:06:30] a busy lifestyle and a couple of children or whatever may be. Whatever needs to be done, we'll just do that.

Karl Yeh:                                Great. Anything else to add?

Kevin French:                        No.

Karl Yeh:                                 Great. Well thank you very much for joining us and we'll see you next time.


Your turn:

Let us know if you have additional homebuying questions that we can answer by submitting them in the comment 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 Kevin French:

Kevin French is a Calgary and area based realtor with a client focus.  He specializes in a stress free home selling process that is built on customer service.  Understanding that your home is one of your largest investments, Kevin employs a marketing mix that ensures you will maximize returns on your home sale. Diligent market research coupled with an in-depth understanding of the Calgary and area markets, allows Kevin to pinpoint the perfect price for your home.

In addition to perfect pricing, Kevin offers a suite of additional services such as professional photography  and an interior designer to ensure your home shows its best. Kevin French has become a trusted name in real estate because he is results driven and works closely with his clients to produce the best results.

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