Home Staging – An Important Marketing Strategy

Fri, 15 Jul by canadianrealestateservice

Getting the best possible price for your home , as quickly as possible, is a common goal of most sellers. Keeping your home in great shape for those critical showings must be seen as a priority by everyone in the family.
1. A dirty and/or untidy home will discourage many buyers because this seems to show how well you have or haven’t maintained the home over the years. Owners could hire a home cleaning service to do the work, or they could do the work themselves and save a few dollars. Make sure that whoever is doing the work is doing it well.
>Cleaning Guidelines
-Dust each room from top to bottom. Vacuuming all surfaces including
the curtains and window coverings.
>Dust all lamps and light bulbs, try to ensure that your light bulbs are as bright
as possible.
>Clean all windows, mirrors and plumbing fixtures.
>Clean all appliances including inside the dishwasher and the oven.
>Pet owners\, you might consider placing your pets outside the home during the sale as well as placing a number of air freshners around the home as pet owners often lose the sense of smell after a number of years.
2. Remove all personal decorative effects.
> By removing all personal items, like photographs, knickknacks, and family heirlooms the buyers may find it easier to visualize the home as theirs.
> Any sports memorabilia, political propaganda, or specific affiliations with groups or clubs should be removed as these items could bias your possible buyers against the home.
3. De-cluttering
> Removing as much “stuff” as possible will be very beneficial in terms of making your home seem larger and more livable. Remove extra clothing from the closets, extra furniture in the rooms.
4. Neutralize the Walls;
> A fresh coat of paint, especially in neutral colors will help to present your home in it’s best possible light.
The above suggestions will go a long way to reducing the time on market, and encourage the largest offers from your potential buyers. Good Luck my friends.

How to Transfer Ownership of Family Home at the Death of a Parent.

Wed, 07 Mar by canadianrealestateservice

The simplest way to transfer ownership of a family home on the death of a surviving parent is to sign a legal agreement that places a family member, or members as co-owners of the property prior to the actual death. In order for this to work in the interests of all of the family members there has to be some preparation work done by ALL family members. There has to be an agreement among the family members that this arrangement is agreed to by everyone.
If this arrangement can be made there is no need for a probate and the land can be sold by the family members agreed to previously This same method can be used in relation to Bank accounts and other securities. Trusted members of the family or executors are named as co-signers on the bank accounts and the securities account. This little bit of planning can save the surviving family members of long probate timelines and probate expenses. A conversation with your lawyer, or your parents lawyer can save you time, money and stress when dealing with a parents death. It is worth checking out in your situation.

Getting Your Home Ready for Selling

Wed, 14 Feb by canadianrealestateservice

Get the most for your money and concentrate on the areas of highest return in your home –Kitchens, bathrooms, finished basements, special finishes and appliances.
Look for needed repairs to waterproofing, roofing, chimneys; buyers do not want to have to invest big time in their new home. Focus on little things – You can spruce up your home without spending big bucks.
Fresh paint, improved lighting, doors and door handles, and any number of minor improvements will improve buyer appeal. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to improve curb appeal either. Strategically placed plants or bushes and neat lawns or low maintenance landscaping can improve first impressions. Finally, and this is important, don’t borrow on
your credit card to make any of these improvements, the interest rates will eliminate any return that you might gain, talk to your banker about a short-term loan, much better rates.

How to Prepare Your Home for an Apprasial

Tue, 06 Feb by canadianrealestateservice

A critical factor in selling your home for the best price or any price is the appraisal that is provided to the mortgaging institution as a prerequisite to mortgage approval.
The list price must be within the current market range. Appraisers come up with a value by comparing your home to recently sold homes. A overpriced home will be a hurtle for the buyers in terms of getting a mortgage. An over priced home will also give the buyers an opportunity to try to renegotiate the selling price.

Unauthorized building renovations can also create problems for sellers. Failing to get the required permits for changes to the home could find their way in your home appraisal. This often results in fines and order to remove the offending structures, and may result in the buyers walking away out of mistrust. Be sure you deal with these problems before you list, as you will save yourself and the buyers much frustration.

The outward condition of your building lot will either add to the appraisal or take away from the appraisal. Be sure to clean up the lot and repair any offending conditions before you allow an appraiser in.

It is always a good idea to keep the warranties and dates of installation of new appliances, HVAC, Hot Water Tanks and other features which add value to your home. By paying attention to the above issues you are likely to have no surprises with any appraisal

Should I Leave Room for Negotiation in my Asking Price?

Tue, 23 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

The answer to the above question is a definite NO! The longer, more reasoned answer follows.
Leaving room for negotiation in your list price is flawed thinking for at least two significant reasons. First of all you are inviting a low ball offer. The buying Realtor will be able to determine that the price is above market value by preparing a Current Mark Analysis. (CMA). He will likely recommend a less than market offer. This leaves the seller behind from the very beginning of the negotiation. Secondly experience tells most Realtors that properties priced at market value are the first to sell. Often a market valued home will receive more than one offer and likely within hours or after only a few days. Often the seller will even receive a higher selling price than the asking price as a consequence of the competing offers.
Home Owners using the principle of high asking prices will find few; if not no calls for showing and at the very lowest offer. Homes remaining on the market for many weeks or months will lead to buyers thinking that there is something wrong with the home, again inviting low ball offers.

Why Does Our Home Appraise Less Than a Similar Home?

Tue, 23 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

I have had many Clients ask me; ” why does our home appraise less than my neighbor’s home, it is almost exactly the same?” There are actually many reasons for two similar homes appraising at different values. The primary reason is the recent renovations completed in the competing home. Keeping your home updated and “modern” is critical for the current value of homes. A renovated home will not require any extensive renovations, unless the buyer is not satisfied with the current status. A second, very important reason is that if renovations have been completed, including any extensions, patios or garages without the required permits this will lower the value of the home, because the new buyers will have to pay double for updated permits. This can be costly, and even more critical it is seen as a major hassel for the new owner.
Overpricing your home in the first place may leave the impression with the seller that their home is under appraised. The changing market values can have an immediate impact on the appraisal The timing of the appraisal in a rapidly changing market may have a direct impact on the current appraisal, positive or negative.
Lot sizes and specific features may have a direct effective on appraisals as well. The quality and size of the bathrooms and fixtures, the size and quality of the kitchen and appliances are critical features, exterior finishing and outdoor structures like patios and landscaping. If one or more of these features and others are present in a competing property the appraised value may differ substantially.
One more final issue may be that the person doing the appraisal may be incorrect. If there is some doubt it may be a wise move to get an appraisal before you list in order to confirm the results of other appraisers, or to have an appraisal done following one that may be seen as incorrect.

Should I Have a Pre-Sale Inspection of my Home?

Mon, 22 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

Having a pre-sale inspection of your home will almost always lead to a better selling price for your home. There are several important considerations when making this decision. Knowing the actual condition of your home from a professional perspective will serve you well. Getting prior notice of minor/ major repairs can avoid surprises. A pre-inspection can avoid a second round of price negotiations. A pre-inspection will also lead you and your Realtor to a more realistic price for your home.

Knowing the actual condition of your home is an extremely positive position to be in. A professional inspection will likely identify many small or major problems with your home. Knowing this prior to pounding in a for sale sign will help you address some, if not all, of the deficiencies in your home.
It is often those small repairs that will make an important difference to buyer’s first impressions.

Being aware of the deficiencies in your home and any action to resolve these problems will likely remove the necessity of renegotiating a sale price after the buyers home inspection. Having the home inspection available with actions taken by yourself will also relieve some of the anxiety of the home buyer.

Pricing your home is a critical part of selling it. your pre-inspection will offer you and your Realtor reliable information regarding the marketability of your home. Do not be reluctant to spend the $400.00 to $500.00 dollars on a pre-sale inspection as it will undoubtedly return value for you.

What You Should know About Radon

Thu, 18 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

The following article is submitted for your information. It was originally posted by the Edmonton Real Estate Board

What is Radon? Radon is a tasteless, odourless and invisible radioactive gas that results from decaying uranium, and is a leading cause of lung cancer.
What happens? Radon filters up from the ground and into the air. It can enter buildings through openings where the buildings contact the ground. In the outdoors, radon is diluted to low levels. Inside buildings, however, radon can build up to harmful, concentrated levels.
What are the health risks? Breathing increased levels of radon increases a person’s chance of developing lung cancer. In fact, Radon is linked to 16% of lung cancer deaths. It is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers, and the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.
How does Radon enter a house? Because radon is a gas, it can move freely through the soil enabling it to escape to the atmosphere or seep into buildings. When radon escapes from the bedrock into the outdoor air, it is diluted to such low concentrations that it poses a negligible threat to health. However, if a building is built over bedrock or soil that contains uranium, radon gas can be released into the building through cracks in foundation walls and in floor slabs, construction joints, gaps around service pipes and support posts, floor drains and sumps, cavities inside walls, and the water supplies. When radon is confined to enclosed or poorly ventilated spaces, it can accumulate to high levels. Radon levels are generally highest in basements and crawl spaces because these areas are nearest to the source and are usually poorly ventilated.
What can you do? No building is radon free. The good news when it comes to radon is it’s a solvable problem. Even if you fall in love with a home that hasn’t had a radon test or the results are high, a radon mitigation device can be installed to vent radon gas outside the home from the basement. By hiring a C-NRPP certified Radon Measurement Professional to measure radon levels in the air, or doing the tests yourself, you are taking the first steps of preventing lung cancer in your family or occupants of the building. Mitigation costs vary, but are often not more than $2,000-$3,000. Hire a Certified Radon Technician to install the device to ensure it’s done properly.
For more information, visit https://www.reca.ca/consumers/information/radon.html

Exterior Improvements are a Good Investment for Homeowners

Wed, 17 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

A review of information regarding the value of investing in improvements to your home often fail to recognize the real value of making improvements on the exterior of your home. One of the most effective means of increasing the value of your home is to invest in improved landscaping, including the building of a unique deck/barbecue area.
According to a recent article the return on the investment can be in excess of 150-200%. Where to start?
Take a look at one of the many landscaping and deck building magazines that you can find at most grocery stores. Check out the local library they often have great reference materials, and sometimes almost step by step directions to follow for the DYI guys and gals.
Try to focus on unique projects that are not impossible for the handyman. Hiring someone able to do the work for you is another option but more expensive. Some of the big box stores offer short courses on how to projects, it is worthwhile to check them out.
When tackling the landscaping options be careful not to include high maintenance projects as most working people and families are looking to reduce time requirements for maintaining their yards. Many landscaping projects are planned to reduce the environmental footprint of your property, an option that is becoming even more popular.
Have fun planning and tackling that outside project, and keep in mind that it is one of the most rewarding in terms of resale value.

Will My Home Sell in the Winter Months?

Sat, 13 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

The cold weather does not mean that the Real Estate Market has closed down, but rather that it has changed somewhat due to the weather. In this mobile economy there are always people being transferred, taking on new jobs and a host of other reasons for relocating. It is true that during the winter months there tends to be fewer houses on the market, but this is good news to the seller. Fewer houses on the market means that there are fewer home sales that are competing with yours.The number of sales may decrease over the winter months but with the lower inventory this may enhance your opportunity top sell.The circumstances facing buyers in the slower markets does not decrease the need for some to buy homes, but it does increase the sellers success at selling.
At this particular time in Alberta the mortgage rates remain very low, for example a 5 year fixed mortgage is available at 3.24%. (January 2018 ) There is no doubt that the interest rates will be trending upward in the next few months and so buying or selling now may hold some financial advantage for the next 5 years.
some of the associated costs of buying and moving may be lower as well; e.g. moving costs, renovation costs, which would reduce costs at this time of the year.
If you are in a position or need to sell your house during the winter months do not hesitate to discuss this with your Realtor as there are some definite advantages for selling now.

Understanding the Importance of Pricing Your Home Correctly

Fri, 12 Jan by canadianrealestateservice

Fining the correct price to place on your home to sell is a difficult process for most homeowners.  Setting your price depends almost exclusively on the state of the market in your area.  Often however what you paid for your home, what you have left on your mortgage, your emotional ties to your home can unduly influence the final price that you set.  Allowing these factors to influence your price is, often times the big mistake that homeowners make.

Most effective Realtors are capable of doing a Current Market Analysis, or a CMA on your home prior to establishing a price.  This information is most important, especially if you are in a hurry to sell your home. A CMA will compare your home to other homes in the area that have sold in the last six months. Your Realtor is able to examine photos of the comparable homes, not just the exteriors, in fact they may have sold the comparable house in question.  It is difficult to determine the selling price of a home unless you examine all of the features of the home.

Be sure you consider the cost of  holding the property for an extended period of time.  Are you moving ?  If you are then are you able to hold two mortgages while you wait to sell your home?  If not it is critical that you set your price according to the market and not a host of emotional issues that may influence you as an owner.

Other questions that you might ask in relation to pricing would be;

  1.   Has your home been renovated in the last 10 – 15 years?
  2.   What is the age and condition of your hot water tank, furnace, and home appliances? Buyers are   usually unable to afford to buy new items on top of a new mortgage.
  3. What is the condition of your roof?
  4. Is the landscaping in good condition?
  5. What is the condition of your exterior, paint, siding, concrete work, etc.?

The emotional ties that you might have developed over the years in relation to your home may seriously impair your objective views. Listening to your Realtor is good advice in relation to price!


The data included on this website is deemed to be reliable, but is not guaranteed to be accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.