Home sellers, rest assured that selling your home so that you can start living in Ukee needn’t be an over-whelming process. We have compiled here the most frequently asked home-seller questions we’ve received over the past 2 plus decades in real estate, and are sharing them here with you, so that you will have a good understanding of the need-to-knows of Home Selling.
Please check out Part One and Part Two of the home sellers FAQ series if you haven’t already, to find out how to get the process started and moving without a hitch, and please follow along as we share the most important steps towards closing on your deal.
Listing Your Home for Sale
Q: What makes an effective MLS listing?
A: We take great pride in our ability to get your house seen and sold. After decades of experience we have noted the most frequently committed listing FAILS, so that we can help you avoid any unnecessary delays:
- A listing with no photos – buyers demand photos, many pass on homes that don’t have pictures
- A listing with poor/dark/confusing photos – buyers like to get a real sense of the room, not guess it
- A listing with no additional media links like virtural tours, floor plans, etc. – Buyers want to see every angle of the home to get a feel for layout and size
- A listing without room measurements – this is how buyers determine if they think your home is big enough for them; always include the measurements
- A listing without description of features – there’s space to describe the home and its best assets, amenities, school zone, etc. There’s no excuse for not completing this.
So as you can see, there is a huge variance of what information is provided to buyers, and to lose a buyer who might be good for your listings at this stage is a wasted opportunity.
Q: What are your thoughts on Open Houses, do they work?
A: Open houses are great for creating a neighborhood buzz, mostly because the majority of your guests could be your neighbours! This is not necessarily a bad thing, they may have family or friends wanting to move into the area, in which case they will be our best advocates. But most serious buyers have agents and will book a private viewing to see the home.
So do open houses actually attract the buyer who buys the home? Rarely. There are also security issues to consider, and agents must have the very strict protocol to keep your home and themselves safe. So I always discuss the topic with every owner to decide what their personal preference is.
Q: What’s the best schedule for allowing showings?
A: In a perfect world, you, the kids and the dog are able to go away for 4-5 days so that your home is completely available to agents and buyers. The homestays tidy and clean, and there are no naptime or activity schedules to work around. However, I completely understand if this isn’t feasible, in which case I want you to be more specific about the times your home will be available. You are allowed to say no showings after 8pm or between 2pm-4pm. Having your home “showcase ready” can be a large part of the stress, so we will help you plan, so as to manage it as best as possible.
One thing I would recommend you to avoid, unless you have tenants, is requiring 24 hours notice for bookings. When agents are out with their buyer clients, criteria can change pretty quickly. Agents often do new searches in their car after viewing a home, and your home might fit the new criteria. Asking for 24 hrs stalls the process, and buyers will skip your home and move on to others available sooner – possibly losing a good buyer.
Q: How do home showings work?
A: When your home is listed for sale on the MLS, any real estate agent (from our team or another company) who has a client who is interested must book a showing to see the property. This is how the process works:
- Agent calls our office to book a showing time.
- Our office calls you to confirm that time and date works for you.
- Once that you confirm the appointment is ok, our office calls the other real estate agent’s office back (not the agent personally) and confirms that they work for the company.
- Once everything checks out, at that time our office will give the lockbox information to the other agent’s office who will then give it to them. At no time is the lockbox info ever given to a real estate agent over the phone without confirming their identity.
Q: Do I have to be present for showings?
A: No, we have lock boxes which allow agents to access your home after you confirm the showing. I actually encourage homeowners not to be present when showings are going on because it makes the buyers uncomfortable and many times they rush through the property without taking a close enough look.
Q: Do I need a lock box?
A: You are not required to have a lockbox, but if you want to take my advice and not be present for showings it will be hard to do without one.
Q: How long are showings?
A: Showings are typically scheduled in hour time slots, for example, 1 to 2 pm. If the property is getting a lot of interest and showings booked we can shorten that time frame down to 30 minutes to accommodate everyone.
Q: Should I let someone look at my home without an appointment?
A: Never. Our system is set up to confirm the identity of the person and also keeps a record of who entered the property. If they haven’t booked an appointment, tell them to call our office and we can confirm it very quickly if that’s the case. Anyone can go to Staples and have business cards made up, not saying that is the case but as my Grandmother always said, better safe than sorry.
Q: How long will it take to get an offer?
A: That depends on how you decide to price your home. We review all the market statistics with you when we meet and take that into consideration when recommending a sale price. If you price near market value you should sell within the average time, if you are over priced it will take a lot longer. For example, if homes similar to yours in your area take an average of 2 weeks to sell, and you’ve been on the market 60 days, that would indicate that perhaps the home is overpriced.
We hope that you are getting value from our insights, but we’re not done yet! We have one more great dose of information coming to you soon regarding Closing the Deal, so be sure to stay tuned for the final touches that will get your home sold so that you can Start Living in Ukee!
As always, if you have any questions about making the move to Ucluelet, we are happy to help facilitate the move with you; simply contact us. It’s never too late to start living in Ukee!