Preparing to sell your Muskoka home

Hundreds of Muskoka homes are sold each year, and while every transaction is unique, every owner wants to achieve the same end point— the highest sale price possible with NO hassles!

Over the last 20 years, real estate has become a more complex process with many more duties and rules to be followed. Disclosure statements, more complex listing and sales agreements, and a range of environmental and social concerns have all emerged in the past two decades. Even the actual home-selling process has changed with the emergence of Buyer representation — where REALTORS® represent home buyers —which is now the standard. A Buyer’s Representative is obligated to get the best for their clients – not only the best value but the most information too.

The result of these changes means that while hundreds of existing homes may be sold each year, the process is not as easy for Sellers as it was in years gone by. Surviving the selling process in today’s real estate world requires experience and training in such fields as real estate marketing, financing, negotiation and closing — the very expertise available from our great REALTOR® team at Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka!

If you plan on selling your home this year, here are some tips to help you get ready:

  • Contact a Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka REALTOR® and ask them to help you look at your home through the eyes of a prospective Buyer and determine what needs to be cleaned, painted, repaired or thrown out
  • Be objective and ask yourself, “If I were buying this home, what would I want to see?” The goal is to prepare your home to look good, maximize space and attract as many Buyers as possible.
  • During this “getting ready” period it is also a good time to ask why you really want to sell. Selling your home is a big decision and there should be a good reason to sell — perhaps a job change to a new community, or the need for more or less space. Your reason for selling can impact the negotiating process so it’s important to discuss your needs and wants in private with the REALTOR® who lists your home.
  • Maximizing value? The general rule in real estate is that Buyers seek the least expensive home in the best neighborhood they can afford. In terms of improvements, this means you want a home that fits in the neighborhood but is not over-improved. For example, if most homes in your neighborhood have three bedrooms, one and a half baths and 1,500 sq. ft. of finished space, a property with five bedrooms, more baths and far more space would likely be priced much higher and likely be more difficult to sell. With this in mind improvements should be made so that the property shows well, is consistent with the neighborhood and does not involve large capital investments. Often over-improved homes cannot recover the costs in a sale. Remember if you are improving your home for a sale the improvements should reflect community preferences not your personal ones.
  • Cosmetic improvements – paint, wallpaper and landscaping – help a home “show” better and often are good investments. Mechanical repairs – to ensure that all systems and appliances are in good working condition – are required to get a top price.

Ideally, you want to be sure that your property is competitive with other homes available in the area which is something your Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka REALTOR® can advise you on. After all, they see numerous homes every month and can provide suggestions that are consistent with your marketplace to help you get the most without spending unrecoverable dollars!

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