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MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2214 vote 132
 

Tips and secrets for prepping your condo for sale

I am going to be putting my condo on the market for sale within the next few weeks, and I am not exactly sure what to do.

Specs: 2bd+den, downtown Toronto, 1044SF.

Here is what I am thinking:

- Declutter! Pretty much put everything other than the day-to-day stuff in storage, and keep a few "homey" feeling items.

- DeFurniture! My condo is not cluttered with furniture, however my home-office has a HUGE cabinet in it. I might put that in storage.

- Keep the room for the purpose! I am not sure about this one. I use my second bedroom as a home-office. Should I stage it as a second bedroom, so people see how it could be used?

- Make the bedrooms and bathrooms looks like a hotel! Enough said!

- Clean! Cleaning person three times per week?

- Repairs? Not much to do, but I am going to bring in a handiman to fix a few things up.

- Flowers? Should I put fresh flowers every day?

I would really appreciate other people's tips and secrets!
13
Canada / Resale Discussions
 
 
 
ANDREW LAFLEUR
Buzzer
reply 116 vote 32
 
 
Congrats on selling. This must mean you have found your dream home and you are ready to live happily ever after in the suburbs right??? ;)
If your property shows well and is priced correctly, it should sell in 2-3 weeks or less, so you won't need to worry about multiple cleanings or bringing out flowers multiple times.
The most important thing I tell most of my seller clients they can do when selling is 1) de-clutter 2) clean. Removal is nine-tenths of staging in my opinion. Most people just have far too much 'stuff'.
Of course all this work you do to prep your condo will not be worth anything if your property is not priced correctly and if your photos are not professional done.
A short article I wrote on staging your condo for sale:
http://truecondos.com/selling-your-condo-the-truth-about-staging
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2214 vote 132
 
 
Thanks Andrew, much appreciated. Nope. No home yet. I want to sell first and buy second.
If your home doesn't sell in 2-3 weeks, then in your opinion, lower the price by how much?
I am going to pull two interesting points from your post:
True Condos said:
Light it up. Proper lighting is crucial to a well-staged condo. It’s very difficult to have too much lighting. Have at least 2 sources of lighting in every room, and try to keep the lights on for when people enter your condo.

Is there a "light per sqaure foot" metric to follow? Sure, 2 lights in a bedroom...etc... But, many condos today are open concept. I would image it to be about 1 light per 100 square feet?
True Condos said:
The 5 second rule. Your goal should be to capture buyers’ attention and make them love your condo within the first 5 seconds of them entering it. First impressions are the only thing buyers remember when viewing 10-20 condos.

boom. Awesome point.
 
 
ANDREW LAFLEUR
Buzzer
reply 116 vote 32
 
 
a risk taker! selling first in this market takes guts...or a sweet basement at your parents house where you can live if you don't find anything :)
If your condo doesn't sell in 2-3 weeks it may or may not mean anything. every situation needs to be evaluated individually. It's just that generally speaking in a sellers market like we are in if you see listing that is still on the market after 20 days, usually something is wrong (but not always). I try to price my listings to sell in a week or less and for full price or very close to it (in the current market). check out my 'Temperature Check' series on my blog for an inside look at some recent sales of mine: http://truecondos.com/tag/temperature-check
lighting is less important when selling in the summer. reason is we have lots of natural light and even if a buyer is coming through at 8pm to see your condo, chances are your condo will be well lit by the sunlight. if your unit doesn't get a lot of natural light, then be sure to supplement it with some lighting. I wouldn't say there is a rule of thumb, other than it's very hard to 'over light' a space as long as you are using different types of lighting: table lamps, overhead lighting, floor lamps, under cabinet lighting, decorative light fixtures and functional ones.
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2214 vote 132
 
 
Funny. I always thought that selling first was being VERY conservative!
The reason it is conservative in my mind: It allows me to know exactly how much money I have to play with. I do not want to be stuck falling in love with a house a bit out-of-my reach, and going for it thinking I know the value of my condo, and end up getting less for the condo than I need for the house!
Or, being stuck not selling the condo while owning a house, and having to deal with bridge financing. Yuck.
 
 
ANDREW LAFLEUR
Buzzer
reply 116 vote 32
 
 
In a 'normal' market, selling first is conservative, but in the perpetually hot market of central Toronto, selling first means you may get stuck without anything to move into because it's so competitive out there for buyers (especially for the best properties- I'm assuming you don't want to buy a piece of junk!)
Your agent should be able to give you a very good idea of exactly what your condo will sell for, within about a $10K variance. I doubt this will make or break any subsequent purchase. Of course no one can predict the future but generally a unit in a building with high turnover should be fairly easy to predict the selling price and time it takes to sell (given the property is showing in top condition).
Bridge financing is not as bad as it sounds. almost everyone does it when buying and selling. the fees are not as bad as you might think. the banks can set this up with very minimal effort.
also, quick closes are becoming very common these days (that is, finding a buyer for your property who can close in around 30 days or less), so if you buy first you will likely be able to sell quickly and close quickly on the other end assuming you play all your cards correctly.
if you do decide to sell first, make sure you get as long as closing as possible to ensure yourself as much time as possible to find your next property.
 
 
AMAR PAL
Buzzer
reply 98 vote 7
 
 
Does your 2nd room you have as an office look like it would be a spacious room & easily fit a queen bed?
The risk of not having it shown as a room is only really important if it creates a question mark in buyers minds about it being large enough to use as a bedroom.
Often rooms look smaller without beds in them or empty. Buyers think "no way this would be big enough" when if it was staged with a bed it quite clearly is.
 
 
GRACECONDOS
Buzzer
reply 53 vote 4
 
 
Matthew,
Are you hiring a realtor? If so, you should be asking them to cover the cost of a staging consultation. You'll receive a comprehensive checklist of things to do to shine the best light on your suite. This is part of any listing we take on.
Quick input: Make sure every bedroom is shown as a bedroom.
With regards to selling first; it's personal comfort. Most of my clients buy first. We can always tell a seller what they will get with a $10k range. Often they get more - bonus reno/furniture funds. But if you buy first, budgeting on a worse case sale scenario, all should be well.
If you're shopping Realtors, we'd love to toss our hat in the ring!
@GraceCondos
 
 
MOO STASH
BabbleBee
reply 296 vote 18
 
 
If you have a pet, give it to a friend while you are selling your pad. Those things can stink.
As @Andrew said, it is all about first impressions and that stink can ruin it right off the start.
 
 
MATTHEW SLUTSKY
Senior Buzzer
reply 2214 vote 132
 
 
Hi @Geoffrey, you typically cover the cost of staging? That is really interesting. Is this a typical thing for Realtors?
I do have a Realtor, but thank you. Even with a Realtor, I find the differences and extra opinions to be fascinating, and so helpful.
Thank you everyone for your tips. It is unbelievably helpful.
 
 
GRACECONDOS
Buzzer
reply 53 vote 4
 
 
@Matthew We have a few different options for our listings. Some clients prefer not to pay the upfront cost of staging and rather pay for it from the proceeds of the sale. In that case, it is built into our fee. If they want to pay for staging up front themselves, our service then becomes a bit less expensive (as we're not bearing the additional cost).
 
 
AMIT BHANDARI
Buzzer
reply 162 vote 12
 
 
Make the condo smell like bacon!
 
 
BRENT WILKER
Buzzer
reply 126 vote 4
 
 
Amit said:
Make the condo smell like bacon!

BRILLIANT!! +1
 
 
ANTONELLA TALOTTA
NewBee
reply 4 vote 1
 
 
Love the bacon comment lol - keep in mind the holidays are just around the corner, therefore you may want to hold off putting yourself on the market until post holidays - the last think you want is a stale listing!
Ensure every bedroom is just that! Bedrooms are worth a lot more then a den/office :) DECLUTTER, insist on professional pics., ensure you're out of the home when showings are taking place, give your place a fresh coat of paint (if needed and keep it to neutral colours) and let your realtor do what he/she does best - Cheers and good luck!
Ant :)
 
 
 
 
 

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