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  • Writer's pictureThomas Desjardins

Top Tips for Selling Your Home in a Shifting Market

It is no secret that recent changes to Canadian interest rates have led to a rapidly shifting housing market across the country. In Ottawa, prices have fallen by 16% since March, with further decreases possible if interest rates continue to rise. Despite this reversion, Ottawa's price appreciation curve has been on a strong upswing for years. From 2020-2021 alone, Ottawa saw a 56% increase in average sale prices, so a price correction is not unexpected.

As prices fall and supply slowly rises, we are seeing a shift from a very strong seller's market to one where buyers now have more power than they did in the last several years. If you are considering selling your home, it is critical to have the right strategies in place to make sure that your home is sold as quickly as possible, and for the best price possible.

Here are our top tips for selling your home in this shifting market.

Understand your current real estate climate

An important first step for sellers in a shifting housing economy is to be well-informed and realistic in approaching the sale of your property. A candid conversation with your Realtor can help you understand where the market is headed, while also providing context when you are preparing to list your home. While it is possible that your property is worth significantly less than it was a few months ago, it will be in your best interest for you to be realistic about your home's value. An understanding of current trends in your marketplace is a great place to start.

Know your numbers

One of the most important jobs of a Realtor is understanding and interpreting market data. When the economic landscape is shifting quickly, it is important to have up-to-date numbers to help inform your decision-making. Municipal-level data is great for establishing broader trends, while neighbourhood-level data will help you drill down on the factors at play in your specific neighbourhood or for your specific property type. Metrics like average sale price, days to sell (i.e. days on market), and supply levels are instrumental in informing your pricing/marketing strategy and knowing what to expect once your listing goes live.

Prep your home to perfection

Your home may very well be your most valuable asset, so it is ideal to have it looking its best when you are getting ready to list it. This is especially true when there is more competition. Rising supply levels mean that buyers have more choice when deciding what to buy. For that reason, your goal should be to make your home the most attractive option in your neighbourhood. Decluttering, general repairs, professional cleaning, and staging all contribute to making your home look it's best and will attract the most attention. In a market with fewer buyers, this will give you your best shot at selling quickly, and at a great price.

Market it well

In a competitive market, you will want to find a realtor who will do more than simply list your property. The key will be to find an agent who will more proactively market your home.

The goal of a strong marketing campaign is to cast the widest net while targeting the type of buyer you expect to be interested in your home. This begins with a well-researched pricing strategy. One of the worst things you can do in a shifting market is price your property too high. A high price might dissuade potential buyers from even setting foot in the door, thereby reducing your chance of getting a good offer. If you and your Realtor have already run the numbers, this step will be easy.

Once you have settled on a price, professional photos, a creative video, and a landing page will help catch a buyer's attention. A good agent will also share this content widely, beyond Targeted ads, marketing your property to other agents on Facebook, and direct mail campaigns are a few ways Realtors can more actively market your home.

Know a good offer when you see it

In a transitional market, think carefully before declining an offer. These days competitive bids are rare, and sellers can't be certain that other offers will come along. If you get an offer that seems unreasonably low, remember that savvy buyers may simply be testing your motivation.

Before declining an offer, consider a few things: How much traffic are you getting? Have you received any other offers? How many days have you been on market? These factors all come into play when deciding whether or not accept. Also, remember that if you are selling your house with the intention of buying another, when you start looking for your next home, you will be saving money relative to earlier in the year.

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