As a seller, you need to be ready for the current market conditions. It doesn’t matter what your neighbour sold for last year. We are certainly NOT in the same real estate market heading into spring. You will have to adjust your expectations. With preparation and clear expectations of the process, you will certainly have a much less stressful experience and a successful outcome. Home values in Ottawa are still far above what they were pre-pandemic and therefore, unless you bought in the last two years, you will likely be coming out ahead on your sale.
While market conditions vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood, with central Ottawa seeing more activity and less inventory, these three tips will get you to your goal more quickly and more smoothly.
1) Expect to negotiate
Whether or not we are in a buyers’ market, buyers think we are. That means they expect to be able to negotiate with you. Be prepared for this and be prepared to be asked to cover repairs that may come up in a home inspection report. Your agent can guide you on what is appropriate, but understanding that this is the current climate will allow you to make better-informed decisions.
2) Price at market value
Rarely, at the time of publication (mid-Feb), are we seeing offers over the asking price (also known as “list price”) in the Ottawa real estate market. While there have been some in multiple offer situations, based on last month’s data, you can expect to sell at on average approximately 97% of the list price. A home that is priced too low in hopes of receiving multiple offers, may not garner enough interest and find itself relisted at the higher market value when they don’t get the price they were hoping to attract. Homes that are perceived as overpriced are not selling quickly. Buyers are watching and waiting to see if the sellers will eventually drop the price. The “Days on Market (DOM) increase and eventually the property starts to develop a stigma. Buyers ask themselves, “what’s wrong with that house; why isn’t it selling?”
Pricing just right is a challenge for sellers and their agents, especially in a changing and uncertain market. While a good agent will offer pricing advice backed by facts and information, the ultimate pricing decision is up to the seller.
3) Wow buyers with a fabulous first impression
A buyer will dismiss a house within seconds of entering if they are not impressed as they walk in. While it may take a bit more to convince them that this is the right house, the first impression is critical to drawing them in and seeing your home as potentially “the one”.
The must-dos for creating a fabulous first impression include the basics like decluttering, repairs and painting, staging and cleaning. But there are many more nuanced tactics to use to ensure your home is the best one on the block, or at least on the MLS at your price point.
You may be considering selling but are overwhelmed by the list of things that have to be done to prepare the home for market. I can assure you, this is normal. Your best bet is to hire an agent, like me, who will coordinate the projects, contractors and all involved! I even include most of the items on the list in my service fee. Why? Because if we can’t work together to present your home in its best light, then you won’t get the most money in your pocket in the end. For the most part, this means that you have very few out-of-pocket expenses related to selling, until the time the house transaction closes and the house is sold.
Want to learn more about selling your home this spring? Curious about the market value of your home in this current market? I’d love to help. Send me an email or shoot me at text at 613.898.1184.
I'm Liisa and I love helping people moving to Ottawa make their home purchase and transition smooth and seamless. I also love helping sellers get the most for their Ottawa home. Let me know how I can help you make your real estate dreams come true.
613-898-1184 (call or text)