I’ve seen well over 1,000 homes in just the past 12 months. From the sparkling to the scary, I’ve seen it all, and believe me when I say getting top dollar for your home can easily be won or lost within a few minor details.

As the seller, the first thing your Realtor should make you aware of is that presentation is everything. Your house/condo may be the best deal in the neighborhood but if it doesn’t look like a jewel, it may as well not be. Rightfully or not, buyers do judge their books by their covers, so you’d do best to ensure they like what they see. While some of the scarier things I’ve seen over the past few months would be eliminated by even the most lax common sense — forgetting to flush is not the best way to sell your home — a few other mistakes or oversights are less obvious.

Needless to say that every one of us is free to keep our home as we see fit — no one way is better than any other. However, the topic right now is the best way to sell your home, and here, there are definitely ways that are better than others.


First of all, don’t be home! I do a thorough job of preparing my buyers, but when the sellers follow us around like tour guides, the buyer invariably feels uncomfortable and nine times out of 10, will cruise through the home and forget about it the second the shoes come back on. Secondly, please remember that there is a time and place for your incredibly delicious and savoury ethnic food — not right before, or during, a showing! Take the time, instead, to fill your home with universally common fragrances — deodorizing sprays, fresh flowers, baking pies and so forth.

Another item that can quickly turn off many buyers is pets. Trying to get a seller who is a loving pet owner and comfortable allowing their best friend(s) the same liberties in the home as they themselves have, to do business with a non-pet owner is like asking Superman and Batman to exchange costumes — it’s nothing personal, but they just don’t get where the other is coming from.

Finally, when selling your home, it’s important that your home be 100 per cent sell-ready from Day 1. If listed properly, the first week or two is when you will attract the most interest, so if you’re cleaning up during those first few days, or everything isn’t quite yet ready, you’re not doing yourself any favours. It’s a common misconception that getting the listing up as soon as possible is the best way to sell quick. In fact, depending on the circumstances, it can actually be detrimental and, at other times, a ploy by less than superior agents clawing for a listing.

There are, of course, numerous things to be aware of, along the lines of the matters discussed above, but for now the confines of this space will have to do. Just remember: it’s not a question of whether you’d buy your home or not — you already did! — it’s a question of why someone would buy your home and not the dozens of others they’re considering.

For more information, feel free to e-mail Amit at amitp@rogers.com.

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