February 17, 2010

Tips for Choosing a Calgary Realtor for Listing your Home

Spring has sprung in Calgary, and I don’t just mean the milder weather we’ve been enjoying. The Calgary real estate market seems to be off to a healthy start for 2010.

At GreenApple Staging & Images, we’ve been busy giving pre-market consultations to home sellers looking to maximize their home’s potential. We’ve also been doing tons of MLS photography shoots as our regular clients seem to be listing up a storm. And, we’ve also done a lot of home staging and furnishing of properties for sale that would otherwise have sat vacant.

The reward of all our effort? Homes are selling! We’re so excited to be part of our busy Calgary Realtor teams that are making a difference to many home owners in selling their properties.

Are you thinking of listing your home sale, but don’t know who to call? How do you go about choosing a Real Estate Agent to list your home with? With some 5000 Realtors in Calgary, this is not an easy task! Here are a few of our best tips:

  1. Insight – Pricing a home is part art and part science. All Agents have access to current statistics, but applying it appropriately to any given property is a little trickier. You want an Agent who will help price your home accurately. Go too high, and buyers lose interest. Price too low . . . well, no one wants to leave money on the table, but you could end up with multiple offers to help correct that.
  2. Investment – The real estate game has changed dramatically in Calgary. Houses no longer sell themselves, just because you put the sign on the lawn. With over 90% of home buyers now starting their home search online, you need an Agent that understands the importance of great photography and properly preparing a home for sale. It has to be visually appealing for today’s home buyers! Ask about an Agent’s value-added services. Better yet . . . check out the properties they currently have listed to see for yourself. Can you see the rooms in the photos? Do you like what you see?
  3. Impact – When an offer comes in, you need a skilled negotiator! What might look like a straight forward sale can get complicated very quickly. It’s not just about the dollar value — terms, conditions, home inspections, closing issues — as a Home Seller you need someone on your side to navigate these treacherous waters and help save you costly mistakes!

Of course, we whole-heartedly recommend the Agents that we work with! Looking for someone who is a good fit for you? Just ask us and we’ll pass on a qualified referral.

February 1, 2010

What is Your Clutter Costing You??

In Pre-Market Consultations, I often recommend to Home Owners that they start the process of moving and packing before they list their home. And nearly as often, I get a surprised and somewhat reluctant reaction! It gets even worse when I suggest that they look into some additional off-site storage to clear out excess boxes and furnishings from their home.

While I totally understand how unappealing all that work is, the reality of selling your house means that you will have to deal with your stuff . . .  and moving it . . . sooner or later.

But would you be more willing to start moving out of your home a little early if someone was going to pay you to do it?

Did you know that is exactly what a buyer will do? They will pay you to pack up your stuff.

In HomeGain’s latest survey (2009), they published the top 12 low-cost Do-It-Yourself home improvements that pay off when selling your home. And guess what the number one Return on Investment is?

Cleaning and De-cluttering!

They estimated the effort at a cost of $200, with a $1500-$2000 price increase!

In fact, most of this job is absolutely free, aside from the effort — which you have to do eventually, anyway.

Even if you need additional storage space, you can rent a 10’x10′ mini-storage unit for about $238/month . . . or look into renting a private garage with more space for even less money. Clearly, the couple of extra grand you’ll get, makes it worthwhile. 

And the more clutter you have, the more it will cost you to not deal with it. One of the top selling features of a home in today’s real estate market is organized storage. Our lives are so hectic and crazy busy, that we really need our homes to “work” for us. Buyers value a home that holds some promise of a more organized life. Even if your home does have a lot of storage, if it is over-stuffed and the picture of chaos, it leaves a buyer with the impression that whatever it is, it’s not enough.

Order is serenity.

Keep saying that to yourself as you sort through closets, fold and stack your linens like a store display, and turn the labels in your pantry to the front.

Order is serenity . . . order is serenity . . . order is serenity.

And better yet . . . let a wide grin spread across your face as you further remind yourself . . . serenity means money in your pocket! Ahhhh, there’s a thought you can fall asleep to.

Filed under: Home Selling — Tags: , , — admin @ 7:39 pm