THE Most Important Thing

Selling your home now is different from what selling your home would have been earlier in the year. The rules have changed because the market has changed. We’re no longer playing the same game. One of the ways I know this is because it’s been a while since I’ve heard someone say “Any monkey can sell a house in this market” or “My house will sell itself.”

Whether or not there’s some truth to these statements isn’t the issue. Every home in central Toronto will sell. There’s always demand. The questions aren’t whether a monkey can sell a home or a home will itself, but for how much and how quickly a home will sell.

The market remains fairly strong. Demand continues to outpace supply. Prices remain high, too (but not as high as they were in early spring). And certain fundamentals also remain unchanged. For example, the key components to selling your home are still: preparing your home for market or staging, marketing, negotiating and setting the right list price. To sell your home for top price you have to do each of these well, but setting the right list price is THE most important component to a successful home sale. If you don’t get the price right you probably won’t sell your home and all your other efforts will go to waste.

Here are a few trends I’ve been noticing lately in this new market:

  • Homes that are overpriced aren’t selling. When you get the price right, the home will sell because the buyers are out there. I’ve noticed two or three homes just this week that sold shortly after their prices were reduced to what I felt was the right price.
  • Whereas earlier this year a home could be priced anywhere close to its fair market value and it would generate multiple offers, today you have to price your home significantly below its fair market value if you want a chance to generate multiple offers. (But see the next point.)
  • Homes that are priced significantly below their fair market values aren’t always generating multiple offers and, of those that do generate multiple offers, some are still selling for less than what I would consider fair market value because buyers aren’t bidding as high as they used to.
  • Homes that are properly priced are selling for good prices and in short periods of time.

So how do you set the right list price? There are no hard and fast rules because every home and every situation is different, but here are a few thoughts:

  • Begin by figuring out how much you think your home will sell for. How much are comparable homes selling for?
  • Determine whether yours is the kind of home that will appeal to many buyers or few buyers.
  • How quickly do you need to sell?
  • Setting an artificially low list price to generate multiple offers which will produce a high sale price is a risky gambit.
  • Holding off on offers is also a risky gambit as many buyers will think you’re expecting multiple offers and won’t want to participate.
  • Consider setting a list price that’s close to or slightly higher than your home’s approximate value, say within $25,000 to $100,000 depending on the price, to leave yourself a little room to negotiate because many buyers are expecting you to negotiate these days.

Remember, every home will sell. It may just take a little longer to sell and it may sell for a little less than it would’ve sold for earlier in the year. It’s important to be patient and have realistic expectations. Will homes sell by themselves? Can any monkey sell a home in this market? I don’t know. But I do have a banana almost every morning in my smoothie.

If you know anyone who is interested in learning how the market works and would like to receive the kind of help that involves honest answers, straightforward advice, no pressure and being treated like family, please let me know the best way for me to connect with them because I’d like to offer them this kind of help. And as always, don’t be shy if you have any questions or comments about this post! Thanks for reading.

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2 Responses to “THE Most Important Thing”

  1. Marci Koifman October 9, 2017 at 10:42 pm #

    Michael, once again you are right on.

    • Michael Meltzer October 24, 2017 at 11:48 am #

      Thanks, Marci. (Sorry for the delayed reply. I was away for a bit.)

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