Thinking Of Listing You Home For Sale? What You Should Do Before, During And After Listing It.

Many home owners in the Kamloops area are thinking about  selling their home but are unsure about where to start.  There are numerous real estate companies in Kamloops with even more Realtors at each company. Here is a guide to help home owners prepare and understand the steps before, during and after selling your home.

1. De-clutter, clean up and touch up: Ensure your home is in good condition and will “show” well. This means that all unnecessary items that clutter a room should be removed and stored or donated. The tidier a room, the larger it feels. Buyers will not be distracted by clutter and untidiness when viewing your home. Touch up the paint in your home. This includes re-painting rooms with neutral light colors. Dark colors tend to make rooms feel dark and small. Remember, any strong odors need to be eliminated as well. It is important to have buyers imagine themselves in a home, strong smells, bold colors and cluttered spaces impede a buyers ability to do so. It is important to put your best foot forward from the start.

2. Interview Realtors: Every Realtor is different, the marketing techniques and level of service varies between agents. Interviewing a few Realtors for the job of selling your home is essential. Ensure you find a Realtor who will:
– Keep you informed on a regular basis about progress made towards selling your home.
– Promptly return all of your calls or emails (find out what tools are in place to ensure good communication).
– Actively market your home (ask about the marketing techniques used ie. internet advertising).
– Give you honest, accurate market information.
Developing a relationship with your Realtor is essential. You will feel comfortable asking questions or sharing concerns as they arise.

3. Signing a listing agreement: Once you have chosen a Realtor to represent you, you will then sign a listing contract. You will find the following in a listing contract:
– Contract period: You will specify the period of time that you will commit to listing your home with your Realtor. This time period can range and can be from one month to numerous months.
– Physical and legal description of the property to be sold.
– Listing Price: you and your Realtor will come up with a suitable list price to put your home on the market. You have to ensure that you are not over pricing your home. Price it at a competitively so it will sell. Your Realtor will show you comparable sales that directly compare your property to other similar properties. These comparable properties must be SOLD, not current homes on the market, because homes on the market will not necessarily sell for the asking price.
– Listing Service & Cooperation: Your Realtor commits to placing your home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and will cooperate with all real estate brokerages.
– Commission rate: There is no “standard” commission rate, every Realtor is different. This is an important question to bring up during the interview stage so that you know what to expect.  The most important thing you can do is offer a strong buyer agent commission, otherwise it is much more difficult to sell your home. Commission is paid by you, the seller and covers both the selling agent’s commission and the buyer’s agent commission.
– Commitment to Confidentiality: Your Realtor is agreeing contractually that your personal and confidential information will not be shared with any outside parties, this includes your motivation to sell or current financial situation.
– Limited Dual Agency: Sometimes a situation arises in the sale of a property where the listing Realtor sells your home to their own buyer or the listing Realtor and buyer’s agent are from the same office. This is called limited dual agency and in this case the Realtors involved have to stay neutral and not advise either party.
– As the seller you would agree to: refer any inquiry about the sale of your property to your Realtor and accept an offer made during the contract that fulfills your selling requirements. As a seller you have the power to accept an offer that is acceptable to you, your Realtor should not force you to accept any offer that you are not comfortable accepting.
– By signing the complete document you as a seller have committed to working towards the sale of your property with the Realtor you have chosen.
– If you are not satisfied with your Realtors service, some agents will allow you to cancel your contract at any time. This is also something you should discuss during the interview process.

4. Yard Sign, Pictures, Lockbox & Advertising: Your Realtor will arrange to have a yard sign placed on your property to advertise your home for sale. Pictures will be taken of your home to place on MLS and other advertising media. Some agents will take video profiles of your home to use on websites for further advertising. A lockbox will be placed on your front door or other accessible location. A lockbox is important, it allows other agents to access your property (with an appointment of course). Only Realtors and licensed home inspectors have lock box keys.

5. Showings: Your Realtor will call you with any requests to show your home. You will be given a date and time when either your Realtor or another agent would like to show your home to their client. The showing agent will leave a card behind after showing your home. During these showings you should vacate the home in order to ensure that the potential buyers feel comfortable searching through cupboards and closets.

6. MLS Tour: If your home is close to the Kamloops city core it will be included in the MLS tour. This is where Realtors tour new listings in Kamloops and preview them for potential clients. MLS tours happen every Tuesday in Kamloops and alternates between the North and South shores.

7. Open Houses: Some agents will hold open houses at your home. This allows for your home to be exposed to potential buyers as well as allow your Realtor to network with potential buyers.

8. Price Adjustment: There may come a time where you will have to consider adjusting your list price. This market adjustment or price reduction will help refresh your listing and create more excitement about your property with buyers. With the current market, it is important to revisit price adjustments regularly in order to remain competitive.

9. Contract to Purchase: Once a buyer makes an offer. Your Realtor will assist you in negotiating the terms and conditions reagrding the sale of your home. For full details about how a Contract of Purchase and Sale works from initial offer to completion click here.

10. What do you do if your listing expires off of the Kamloops real estate market.

11. Accepted Offer, Subject Removal, Completion & Possession: Once an offer is accepted, the buyer starts to remove subjects such as a home inspection, financing etc. Once the subjects have been removed the offer is considered ‘firm’ and the next step is completion and possession. Completion is the date negotiated in the contract to purchase where the monies and legal documentation is completed and transferred. Possession is the date that the buyer gets the keys to their new home.

As stated earlier, Realtors use a variety of techniques to sell a home. This is why it is important to interview a couple of agents to find the right one for you. Go with your gut feeling, it is often right! If you have any questions please give me a call. I would be happy to help you.

Kamloops Home Evaluation Click here for your free home market evaluation.

Featured Property: 237 Sunhill Court, Upper Sahali, Kamloops, B.C. $499,900

Sunhill Court, Sahali, Sold

Sunhill Court Foyer Real Estate For SaleThis beautiful 3,200 square foot two storey home Sunhill Court Living Room Home For Salewith a full basement is located in a cul-de-sac in desirable upper Sahali. This home has three bedrooms on the top floor and one in the basement. There are two full bathrooms, one two piece bathroom and one three piece ensuite.The master Sunhill Court Kitchen Sahali Real Estatebedroom is huge, boasting a large walk-in closet and a private balcony. There is oak hardwood floors Sunhill Court Upper Sahali Denthroughout the main floor.

Other great features include three gas fire places, built in book cases, main floor laundry,Back Yard of Sunhill Court Property Sahali two car attached garage and five appliances. Beautifully landscaped yard with lush gardens, underground sprinklers and numerous trees provide considerable privacy.

Located on the desirable Sunhill Court nearSunhill Court View of Thompson Valley to the popular Sahali Coach Hills and Albert McGowan water park. The elementary school is within walking distance and Sahali Secondary school is a short drive away.

The lower Sahali area has numerous places to shop as well as a variety of restaurants. Click here to find out more about upper and lower Sahali.

For further information about this property or any other homes for sale in the Kamloops area click here.

Canada’s Subprime Mortgage Secret

The Globe and Mail recently published an article detailing what they called “Canada’s dirty subprime secret”. They looked into over 10,000 Canadian foreclosure proceedings and uncovered a subprime mortgage problem that many (including PM Stephen Harper) claimed does not exist in Canada. Here are some of the main points of the article. Some readers claim the article is fear-mongering and exaggerating the situation while other readers claim that we haven’t seen anything yet. I will let you form your own opinions.  I would love to hear what you think. You can view the entire article by clicking the link at the end of this post.

– Data from both B.C. and Alberta governments and two private companies that specialize in tracking foreclosure proceedings show that lenders are foreclosing on homes at an “alarming rate”.
– More than half of foreclosures in 2008 were initiated by a number of subprime lenders who targeted riskier borrowers with poor credit histories.
– Thousands of homeowners borrowed more than they could afford and lenders lent money too easily.
– The number of unsold homes in Canadian cities is building which has ultimately depressed the value of homes of even people who haven’t overextended themselves.
– Canada does not report court ordered sales or foreclosure numbers like the USA which uses the data to gauge it’s economic health. In Canada it is hard to get these detailed numbers.
– In B.C. and Alberta private companies collect foreclosure data from the courts. Ontario handles their foreclosures through a process known as “power-of-sale which effectively removed the issue from the courts and shielded the scope of the problem”.
– Canada’s real estate sector has not suffered as much as the USA.
– It was common in the past couple years to hear companies who had relaxed lending practices state “We say yes when the banks say no” and “No income verification”.
– We do have a subprime problem in Canada, lenders significantly reduced their lending standards over the past five years.
– Vancouver courts are overwhelmed with the flood of foreclosure applications. It now takes six weeks to process an order vs. one day six months ago.
– Subprime lenders “trashed the market”. These lenders gave loans that no sound financial institution would touch.
– Many wealthy individulas offered private high-interest-rate mortgages to homeowners who already had high debt and are now foreclosing on the properties at lower values than projected.
– Canadian government agencies don’t publish numbers on the scope of high-risk lending also banks and other mortgage lenders don’t disclose details about these loans know as “non-conforming” loans.
– Until the early 2000’s: subprime mortgage lending was often done by private investors or mortgage lenders who would take a gamble and charge high interest rates to home buyers who didn’t meet conservative lending requirements. This was a very small percentage of mortgage lending.
– Mid 2000’s: this small percentage mortgage lending changed into the fastest growing segment of the country’s mortgage market. This brought aggressive U.S. mortgage lenders to the Canadian real estate market which happened predominantly in the west.
– The mentality was as long as real estate values continued to increase the lenders were not taking on a high amount of risk because they could always foreclose homes and sell at a profit.
– Aggressive U.S. mortgage insurers that were approved by the Canadian federal government in 2006. These mortgage newcomers further minimized their risk by selling mortgages to entities that sold securities backed by mortgages to investors.
– Benjamin Tal, an economist with CIBC world markets was one of the first to sound the alarm. He published a report in late 2006 that estimated subprime loans were growing at a “meteoric” annual rate of 50 per cent by the end of 2006, becoming the fastest growing segment of Canada’s mortgage market.
– In 2006, Mr. Tal estimated more than 85,000 Canadian homeowners had subprime loans.
– Late 2007 easy money and soaring real estate prices tempted many borrowers and lenders into viewing homes as cash machines. Numerous second and third mortgages at high rates of interest were taken out to fund a lifestyle that was not financially responsible.

Kamloops Real Estate Open House Weekend: March 14 & 15, 2009, North & South Kamloops & Juniper Heights

Open houses this weekend will be in North Kamloops, South Kamloops and Juniper Heights.

Saturday, March 14th: 693 St. Paul Street, South Kamloops: 11:30-1:00

693 St. Paul Street, South Kamloops2+1 bedroom, 1 bathroom Bungalow. One of the cheapest single family homes in the area. Den and bedroom in the basement. Bring your updating ideas. $214,900

Saturday, March 14th: 625 Windsor Street, North Kamloops: 2:00-3:00

Windsor Street, North Kamloops Real Estate3+2 bedroom home in quiet area of North Kamloops. Close to elementary school and river’s trail. Main floor has all been extensively updated. 2 bedroom suite in basement. $289,900

Sunday, March 15th: #22-2050 Qu’appelle Blvd, Juniper Heigts: 12:00-1:15

Qu'appelle Blvd Juniper Ridge Home for Sale4 bedroom 2 full bathroom Juniper Heights town home. Newer kitchen, open design and private patio off of the living room. Two car garage. $289,900

Sunday, March 15th: 1969 Kechika Drive, Juniper Heights: 1:30-3:00

1969 Kechika Juniper Heights Home For Sale

Beautiful family home with 3 bedrooms and two dens plus 3 full bathrooms. Two car garage, large kitchen and fully fenced yard. Immaculate home. $489,900

To view more listings in Kamloops and Area click here.

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