While selling your home might seem as simple as just putting it on the market and waiting for the offers to come in, there is actually a lot more that goes into selling a home than you may realize. If you’re looking for a home sale that will go smoothly and be as stress-free as possible, it’s important to sit down with your real estate agent and ask some questions that will help manage your expectations and better understand the entire home selling process.
Working with an experienced and reputable real estate agent is a great place to start, but we’ve highlighted a few questions to ask your agent to best prepare for your home sale.
How Much Is My Home Worth?
One of the most important questions to ask when beginning your home selling journey is what your real estate agent thinks your home is worth. Hiring a real estate appraiser is one way to determine the price, but you can also ask your real estate agent to perform a market evaluation. They will consider the current housing market and demand in your area, along with the specifics of your home, such as square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and location to determine your home’s value and what the listing price should be.
Factors such as the age of your home, any recent upgrades or renovations, and proximity to different amenities will also have an impact on your home’s value.
What Costs Will I Incur While Selling My Home?
Another important question to ask your real estate agent is what costs you might incur while selling your home. One of the more obvious costs is the commission that your agent will take for helping you through the selling process, but there are other costs that are important to keep in mind. Some of these additional costs can include fees from a Notary Public or Lawyer, as well as any costs associated with moving, starting/canceling new utility services, and hiring cleaners to clean your home for the new buyers before they take possession.
What Do I Need To Disclose to Buyers?
While there are some things that you likely don’t need to disclose to any potential buyers in your home, in British Columbia you are obligated to disclose any and all known Material Latent Defects, which can include:
- A defect in the home or property that could make it potentially dangerous for occupants
- Anything that classifies the property as uninhabitable
- Lack of appropriate building (or other) permits regarding the property
- Any required updates that will be extremely costly to the new owners to repair
It is important to bring anything you feel may fall under a Material Latent Defect with your real estate agent early on, as they can sometimes have an impact on the value of your property.
How Do I Best Prepare My Home for Sale?
Another important question to ask is what you can do to best prepare your home for being put on the market and potential showings. One of the biggest things to remember is that your home will need to remain clean and tidy for both the listing photos and for showings, as that will allow you to best represent your property. The curb appeal of your home also makes a big impact, as it is the first impression people will get of your home. There are a few simple things you can do to help boost your home’s curb appeal, such as tidying any clutter from the yard, adding some bright flowers and planters, and painting the front door.
How Will You Market My Home?
While selling your home might seem as simple as just putting it on the MLS and waiting for the offers to roll in, there is actually quite a bit of marketing that goes into selling a home, so it’s important to ask your real estate agent what they plan to do to help market your property. The marketing approach is key as it can help attract buyers and make your home very appealing compared to others on the market. Some of the most common marketing materials utilized by real estate agents include:
- Professional real estate photos and floor plans
- Marketing materials such as flyers and brochures
- Advertising on real estate portals such as Realtor.ca and Zillow.com
- Social media marketing through the agent or brokerage’s social media accounts
Some agents also leverage marketing materials such as video, 3D virtual walkthroughs, and virtual staging to help your home stand out. Be sure to ask what your agent will do to help market your property to ensure you’re getting the best service possible.
While selling your home can be a stressful and sometimes emotional time, taking the time to prepare and ask the right questions can give you peace of mind that your real estate agent has your best interest in mind and can do what it takes to get your home sold.