Home Selling Essentials

Selling a home is one of the largest financial transactions you will make in a lifetime. To maximize the return on your investment it’s important to educate yourself on the basics on the home selling process.

Sotheby's International Realty Canada will showcase your home to more quality buyers than any other real estate company in the world. Steven Hill offers the highest calibre of service, discretion and marketing, regardless of your home’s size, neighbourhood or price point.


 Step 1: Prepare Your Property for Sale

It’s important for essential property repairs, cosmetic improvements and in some cases, major renovations to take place. This will help you maximize your financial return and increase the chance of it selling faster.

To ensure you prioritize your time and financial resources on projects that will maximize the value of your property, and avoid “over-improvements” your Sotheby’s International Realty Canada associate, Steven Hill, can then provide you with advice on the required updates and repairs specific to your property type and neighbourhood.

> General Guidelines

• Repairs and improvements should be made so the property shows well and is consistent with the neighborhood’s standards and preferences. At the same time you should minimize capital investments and over-improvements that may not be recovered from the sale.
• If you have an older property, you may wish to get a professional home inspection before putting your home on the market. This will help you identify and address any major repairs that may be required.
• Unless you are prepared to significantly compromise on price, some home repairs are essential. These include repairs to broken mechanical and heating systems, siding and gutters, broken appliances, major fixtures and structural deficiencies such as leaky roofs.
• Cosmetic improvements, including fresh paint and landscaping, are quick and affordable ways to help a home “show” better and often result in positive returns.

> Condo Documents

If you are selling a condominium, you will also need to prepare the detailed documentation relating to your unit and Strata Corporation in advance, as potential buyers and investors will request them in advance of writing an offer or before removing “subjects” on a Contract of Purchase and Sale. These include:

• Title search
• Registered strata plan
• Financial statements of the strata corporation
• Property disclosure statement
• Building envelope report
• Strata and AGM minutes for the past two years
• Other legal documentation required for your jurisdiction


Step 2: Your Pricing Strategy

Ensuring your home sells at fair market value within a reasonable period of time is dependent on your pricing strategy. Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada will help you create the ideal strategy based on the following factors.

> Determine Fair Market Value

Fair market value is the price a buyer is willing to pay for a home given its condition, recent comparable sales and listings, and the local real estate market.

> Comparative Market Analysis

To calculate the fair market value of your home, Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) report summarizing properties in your area with similar square footage, construction, age and condition that have recently sold or are currently on the market. Recent comparable sales and listings are two of the most important factors impacting fair market value. Comparable listings that expired before they had a chance to sell also offer an indication of the fair market value of your property.
Adjustments to your home’s valuation will also be made given its location (e.g. proximity to parks, waterfront, schools and transportation), floor plan, home improvements, amenities, parking, storage and other variables.

> Extraordinary Homes

There are some extraordinary homes and estates that have few or no comparables. In these cases, preparing a CMA requires specialized expertise that an experienced Sotheby’s International Realty Canada associate like Steven Hill can provide. If your property falls into this category, please contact Steven Hill directly to schedule a complimentary consultation.

> Local Market Inventory and Trends

Other factors that may influence the fair market value of your home include whether it’s trending towards a buyers’ or sellers’ market, the number of similar homes on the market, interest rates and the overall lending climate, the average number of days similar properties are on the market, and whether similar properties are selling for above or below the asking price.

> Price Your Home

Determining your home’s listing price is one of the most critical decisions you will make in your sales and marketing strategy, and should be done in consultation with Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada.
Your recommended listing price will take into consideration your home’s fair market value, adjustments for unique
property attributes, neighbourhood market trends and appropriate pricing strategies given current market conditions.

 > The Risk of Overpricing

If you overprice your home above its fair market value, potential buyers and real estate investors will compare it unfavourably against recent comparable sales and listings. The risk is that your property will linger on the market for longer than what is typical for similar listings, stigmatizing it as an undesirable or blatantly over-priced property as a result.


Step 3: Marketing Plan Essentials

Today’s real estate buyers are local and international, and are looking for homes through traditional and digital channels. To achieve top dollar for your home, it’s essential that you maximize the exposure of your property to them.

> Your Marketing Plan with Sotheby’s International Realty Canada

In addition to offering basic marketing services available through other real estate companies, Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada will build a customized marketing plan for your home that is tailored to reach the most relevant and qualified real estate buyers through online, social media, mobile, print and traditional marketing.

> International Marketing for Every Listing

 Our sales and marketing program reaches buyers and real estate investors from coast to coast and from continent to continent with over 800 million annual online impressions and dozens of premier publications.

> Unrivalled Online Marketing: Over 1 Billion Annual Impressions

Our company goes above and beyond the basic lawn sign and MLS exposure offered by other companies. We make a
financial commitment to market your home through innovative online marketing programs, and exclusive relationships
with global media, including sothebysrealty.com, sothebysrealty.ca and sothebys.com.

> Exclusive Print Advertising

From prestigious international print publications such as The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times to publications in your community, we offer our clients local, national and international print advertising opportunities that are carefully curated to reach qualified audiences, including publications that are exclusive to the Sotheby’s International Realty network.

> The Power of Our Brand

Our brand is synonymous with quality and prestige, and the marketing for your home—from professional photography to video tours, property brochures and print advertising— reflects this tradition of excellence.

> Marketing Reports & Accountability

I commit to regular and transparent communication with every single one of my clients. From the moment you list
your home with Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, you will receive regular updates on the results of your marketing - from the number of potential buyers who visit your open house, to the number of people who view your listing online.


Step 4: Showings and Open Houses

Once your home is listed on the market, Steven Hill, Realtor of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, will advise you on how showings and open houses fit into the marketing and selling strategy and will work with you to facilitate them.  Feedback on your property will also be provided from prospective buyers so you can adjust the presentation of your home, or its price, accordingly.


Step 5: Offer Basics

The offer you receive will include: the legal name of the potential buyer(s), the legal name of the seller(s), the legal civic address of the property, the price the buyer(s) is offering to pay, desired inclusions (items in or around the home that the buyers wish to have included in the sale, such as appliances, lighting fixtures or window coverings), amount of the buyer’s deposit, desired dates the potential buyer would like to take legal and physical possession of the home, legal “subjects” or “conditions” upon which the contract becomes final (such as satisfactory home inspection report or financing approval), and the date the offer expires.

 You can respond to an offer in one of three ways:
1. Accept as is: your signature finalizes the contract and it becomes a binding legal contract.
2. Counter offer: you may make changes to the offer, such as adjustments to the price, closing date or conditions.
When you do so, the prospective buyer may accept, reject or make another counter offer in response. Only
when one of the parties signs an unconditional acceptance of the other party’s offer does it become legally
binding.
3. Rejection of the offer: you may simply reject the offer and the sale will not go through.


Step 6: Negotiating Offers

Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada will help you assess each incoming offer to determine whether it’s the right one for your unique needs and circumstances.


Step 7: Close the Deal

The closing or completion day is the day the buyer takes legal possession of the property.

> Preparation

You will need to select a lawyer or notary to help you complete the sale. If required, Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada can provide recommendations, and provide the lawyer with a signed copy of the contract.

> Completion (Closing) Day

On completion day, legal ownership of your property will be transferred to the buyer. Your lawyer or notary will receive funds for the sale from the buyer’s lawyer or notary, and your lawyer or notary will provide you with a statement of adjustments. This list itemizes all costs payable at completion, including legal fees, taxes and other completion costs.
Finally, funds will be used to discharge your mortgage, if applicable, with any remaining proceeds transferred to you in the form of a bank draft.

> Closing Costs

Closing costs associated with selling a home include adjustments, real estate commission, mortgage discharge fee,
capital gains tax (if applicable) and legal fees.

> Possession Day

On possession day, your Realtor, Steven Hill of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada associate will help you coordinate the handing over of keys to the buyer.

Data supplied by CREB®’s MLS ® System. CREB® is the owner of the copyright in its MLS® System. The Listing data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by CREB®.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.
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.