There are many reasons why people choose to sell their homes including a job transfer, downsizing, retirement, spousal separation, trading up, a death in the family, outgrowing your home, or just time for a change. Every Seller has one thing in common: the desire to get as much money as possible for the sale of their home, as quickly and as hassle free as possible.

Before you begin the Selling process, carefully evaluate why you are moving. A complete analysis of your current position will set a good foundation for your next home hunt.

Now that you have decided to sell there are some choices to be made:

  • When is the best time to place my home for sale on the market?
  • Should I buy or sell first?
  • Who shall I hire to sell my home?
  • Which Company would best represent me in the sale of my home?
  • How do I prepare my home for sale?

When is the Best time to place my home for sale on the market?

Most people consider the spring to be the best time to put their home on the market. They usually do not want to move in the winter months with cold temperatures and snow, and feel that the buyers do not want to move at this time of year as well. While home sales do peak in the spring, slow a little in mid-summer and then pick up again in fall for the back to school season, it is important to remember that homes sell at all times of the year. There are normally more homes available for sale in the spring and summer months, and therefore more for the buyers to choose from. Remember that in the winter months there are fewer buyers, but there are also fewer homes for the buyers to choose from. This situation can be advantageous for the seller!

Should I buy or sell first?

That’s a tricky question! If you find a purchaser for your existing home, before you’ve found a new one, you may find yourself living out of a suitcase if convenient closing dates cannot be negotiated, or even worse, you may have to pass on the deal! On the other hand, if you find your dream home before you’ve sold your current home, you may lose your dream home to another buyer who does not have a home to sell, or be faced with carrying two mortgages for a period of time.

So how do you manage? Do your homework and have a good idea of where you want to live, and which homes that meet your needs are of interest to you. Speak to your Real Estate Agent and start your new home search as soon as your existing home hits the market. Identify the home/homes that interest you should you receive an offer on your current home.

If you find a home before you’ve sold your existing one, you can use “sale of your existing home” as a condition on your offer. If you don’t sell your home within a fixed period of time, you can choose not to go through with the offer. This can at times be a difficult clause to get the sellers to agree with, and you may have to forgo your price negotiation power, or pass on the home until you have a firm offer on your property. Purchasing a home before you sell can be a risky strategy if you are counting on the proceeds of the sale to complete the transaction.

If you find a purchaser for your home before you’ve found the home you wish to buy, you can use a clause which states “subject to you finding suitable accommodations” or “subject to your purchase of a new home” as a condition when you sign back the agreement. Again, it will only be for a fixed period of time. If you have not found your ideal home by the time the condition for your purchase is up, you may still decide to proceed with the sale of your home. A buyer with a “sold” home will be in a better position to negotiate price etc… on their next purchase.