Selling a home isn't something to leave up to chance. Without a REALTOR®, this major transaction could quickly become one of your largest regrets. Realtors are experts at the following:
Many people are able to time their sale and purchase so they happen on the same "closing date."
Be ready to work with the large amount of money involved in your real estate transaction.
A “portable” mortgage means you transfer your current mortgage arrangement to your new home without penalty.
This is advantageous if the interest on your mortgage is lower than existing rates. However, if your new home is more expensive and requires a larger mortgage, you will have to borrow the extra money at current market rates.
Perhaps your mortgage permits the buyer of your home to “assume” your mortgage. This is an attractive selling feature if the interest rate is lower than existing rates.
You could also become a mortgage lender. If the buyer is having trouble arranging their financing, you may consider lending directly to them. This plan is called a “vendor take back” mortgage. It’s often used to move a property in a slow market and it is incredibly complicated to set up. Be sure to consult your lawyer before choosing this option.
If you find the perfect new home before you sell your current home, you can talk to your mortgage lender about “bridge financing.” This is when your loan company agrees to lend you the down payment for your new property while you are still paying for the mortgage on your current home.
Capital gain refers to how a property increases in value over time due to the housing market.
If the home was your primary residence, you will not have to pay taxes on any capital gain.
However, if you had tenants living in part of your home such as a basement apartment, a capital gains tax will apply to a portion of this income.
The capital gains tax would also apply to a secondary property such as a vacation or investment property.
Seek professional assistance for help in this area. Be aware that GST/HST taxes will apply to hiring a consultant for their services.
We’ve been outlining the many ways a realtor is essential when negotiating a property sale.
How to choose the best one? Shop around, talk to a few, get quotes for their services, and analyze how comfortable you are in trusting him/her with your real estate negotiation.
Real estate commission
Attack the chores list. By presenting your home at its best, you can attract big offers.
Let your realtor point out things you may not notice and which may detract from your home. Be sure to address all the little imperfections that could give a potential buyer a reason to walk away. Print out a copy of our Is Your Home Ready? – a checklist for a thorough tour of your home.
The house will feel bigger and more inviting.
Cleaning is the most cost effective way to attract buyers. Sparkling floors, windows, walls, doors, and baseboards go a long way to impress visitors.
Be extra tidy in bathrooms and the kitchen. Once it’s clean, keep it clean. Be prepared for the last minute visitors.
Repair as much as you can. Leaky faucets, ceiling cracks, and torn screens detract from your home’s value.
Take away your personal memorabilia:
Removing your influence makes it easier for buyers to envision themselves living in this space.
Neutralize strong colours and wild wallpaper. Painting your home in neutral colours will enhance a room’s size and make it look more inviting. Besides cleaning, painting is the next most cost-effective way to increase your home’s appeal.
You don’t have to spend a fortune, but consider affordable touches:
Don’t get carried away, though. Ask whether your improvement project will make your home more desirable and whether the improvement costs will increase its value.
This sign continues to be one of the most effective ways to advertise your home for sale.
Your realtor may choose a variety of the following:
If you decide to list your home on an MLS system, you can also advertise it on www.realtor.ca – Canada’s most popular research tool for residential real estate.
Over 85% of Canadians start their home search on the internet.
Realtors are also expert networkers and are part of an extensive community of professionals helping sellers and buyers to connect.
This is an efficient way to attract realtors to see your home and keep it in mind for their potential buyers.
Many buyers want to get a feel for the neighborhood before they commit to working with a realtor. Open houses for the public allow passersby to visit your house and decide if it’s a potential space for their next home.
Most people are honest and courteous, but don’t invite temptation. Lock away jewelry, cameras, and other small valuables. You can also ask your realtor to record each visitor’s name and phone number for added security.
Look for trip hazards, broken equipment or furniture. Avoid cooking foods with strong aromas. Nobody wants a house with odours.
The most logical candidate is the lawyer you hired when you bought your home. S/he is already familiar with the property and could easily draft the required documents.
Ask people you trust for recommendations – friends, family, business associates.
REALTORS® can give you the names of several lawyers so you know your home will be in the right hands.
Your lawyer should help you review important documents you have to sign and answer any of your questions about these papers. Know exactly to what you are agreeing.
You’ve been working hard towards this point. Now you get to see how much your efforts are paying off.
Your realtor will present every offer that is submitted for your review. The buyer’s realtor may be present, too. However, the buyer will probably not be there, so you can review and respond to the offer without any awkward pressure. Stay calm, whether good or bad, and stay focused on what you want to do next.
You may ask your realtor for advice regarding the offer. Maybe it’s time to celebrate, or it could be time to plan a counter offer. If your partner and family are involved, you can request private time to discuss matters. At this point, you have three options:
By the time you accept an offer, your REALTOR® will also advise you of reporting requirements by FINTRAC, the federal agency responsible for administering Canada's Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing legislation and regulations. Your REALTOR® is required by federal law to complete a client identification form, and must ask you as the vendor or seller for verified ID such as a driver's license or passport. You can find out more on the FINTRAC web site at http://www.fintrac-canafe.gc.ca.