HOW TO SELL MY CONDO – PART 2
In this second part of the 3-part blog series “How to Sell my Condo”, we dive into the various factors you need to consider if you wish to sell your condo.
When Should I Sell My Condo?
Selecting the right time to sell your condo generally depends on 3 factors: your personal reasons, the current real estate market trends, and the season of the year.
1) Personal Reasons or Goals: What are your reasons for wanting to sell? In the first blog, we covered some personal goals that may prompt you to sell your condo, such as a growing family, the need for a larger space or yard space, or a change in financial situations and the move from homeownership to rent. Personal goals and reasons to sell can occur at any time, although one could create more urgency than the other (e.g., debt problems could make you need to sell your condo fast as opposed to upsizing, where in the latter you would want to take your time to shop for your next home). We will present the option to sell your condo fast in this blog later.
2) Current Market Trends: Real estate market trends is a contributing factor to sell your condo, especially since Southwest Ontario has seen real estate prices increase over the past few years. In a 2020 report by the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of Realtors (KWAR)1, apartment-style condominiums in October have been sold for an average of $395k, that is up by 14.8% compared to the same month last year. Current condo sellers can take advantage of this upward trend and confidently sell their condo at a price that is higher than their original purchase price. This is of course assuming the condo is in good condition and other sale factors are competitive with the market (e.g., comparable condo fees to similar condos in the area, no major repairs due that would require each homeowner to contribute a substantial amount).
3) Season of the Year: Many would agree that spring and summer are the best time to sell a home. The weather and road conditions are ideal for moving and renovations. Photos of the home look better without a cover of snow and you can showcase the front lawn and backyard designs. Fortunately, seasonality is quite irrelevant to selling a condo because the exterior of the home is not affected by the weather (with the exception of some snow clumps on your balcony) and if you have indoor parking, moving any time of the year would not be an issue. With that being said, you could sell your condo anytime of the year, but the challenge lies in finding an abundance of buyers does depend on the season. People looking to downsize would tend to sell during the warmer months of the year and move into your condo around the same time too. Planning to sell your home while others are trying to find them is a great strategy to get top dollar for your condo!
How Do I Sell My Condo Fast?
Depending on your preference, there are 2 routes to selling your condo: hassle-free and fast sale or high profit sale.
High Profit Sale
If you are looking for the biggest payout in the sale of your condo and have no rush to sell, you can go with the traditional route of engaging a real estate agent and listing your condo on the market. Present the details of your condo and negotiate the sale price you wish to list it for (along with the realtor’s commission fee).
The next and most important step would then be to stage your condo. Because of the limited space it inherently possesses, decluttering and staging would greatly help to give it the impression of a larger space. Here are some tips:
- De-clutter any unused or non-daily essentials and seasonal items (e.g., Christmas decorations, party supplies) and store them in a rental storage unit or with a friend. De-cluttering can be an overwhelming task, so try starting with one room or closet at a time.
- Paint rooms in a light, neutral color would give the appearance of a large, clean space. A fresh coat of paint can increase the value of the home and worth the effort in the current market.
- Reduce/remove bulky or extra pieces of furniture that block natural light and regain some floor space to make the condo appear bigger.
- Ventilate your home frequently to allow fresh air in and odors out.
- If you have pets, and since it’s a small space, we recommend to invest in an air purifier than can remove pet dander in the air. Stay consistent on removing pet fur from furniture and surfaces often or use a furniture cover for when you are not showing your home.
After you have sufficiently staged your home, your agent may take photographs and start the listing process. To sell fast, you may wish to allow as many showings as you can in a short time frame. Some homeowners choose to stay with a relative or a friend during that period, so the home remains in a “staged” condition. Otherwise, you may need to prep your home prior to each showing and be away for the duration of the showing.
And finally the closing date is usually determined by the new buyer, which can sometimes put you (the seller) on a tight deadline to find your next home or rental. So it’s also important while staging your home that you’re also out viewing new places at the same time.
Hassle-Free Fast Sale
The second route to selling your condo achieves the goal of a fast and easy sale. It also provides additional convenience such as no cleaning, de-cluttering, staging or showings. This is the route of private selling.
A private buyer will take down the details of your home and its location, compare it to other similar homes in the area and make you a fair cash offer with no commissions or extra fees charged. This offer may not be the same as what a bidding war would bring, but it offers a quick resolution with minimal fuss to you. In some cases, the final take home amount may be the same as what you would get with a realtor after you deduct the commissions and closing fees (which a private buyer would charge you none of).
Another benefit of selling to a private home buyer is that private buyers want to limit the hassle for you and are very flexible on the closing date, so you get to choose the day, week or month or year to close on.
Do some research on private buyers in your area if you wish to consider this route – ensure that the transaction still takes place with a lawyer, there are several good reviews by previous customers, and there is always a contact person ready to answer any questions or concerns with.
In the final part of the series, we will look at the steps after selling your condo – from finding a new home (maybe even another condo) to moving and settling down in your new home.