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Top 5 reasons your house may not be selling

Even though Toronto and the larger GTA is the strongest seller’s market in the country, sometimes a property does not sell, even after 90 days on the market. It may be due to one or several of the reasons, listed below:

Selling a home isn’t as simple as planting a sign in the ground any more. It involves preparation, timing and strategic advice. But if a property is priced right, it can sell quickly, within 2 weeks in many cases.

Here are some common mistakes that prevent a house being sold:

1. Wrong Price. Your property is incorrectly priced.

Getting this wrong can change many variables affecting a quick and profitable sale. If your property is priced too high, the very people who would be most suited to your property (at the lower, correct price) will not even see your property, as it is priced out of their reach. Even worse, the longer your property stays on the market, the more buyers will assume there is something wrong with it.

It is always a good idea to get your property evaluated by a real estate professional. They take many variables into account, including looking at similar sales in your community (solds and for sale), market trends. (More about Home Evaluations)

Alternatively, you can always hire an independent third party to get your property appraised, which is slightly different, as they will price it according the worse case scenario. Because of this, an appraisal is usually lesser than current market value.


2. Limited Access.

Houses in the GTA may sell faster, but that doesn’t mean less people see each of them. In the initial days after listing, a large number of agents and their clients will see your property, and it’s probably good to put up with it as much as possible for the first 2 weeks.

It can be a real pain having to leave your house so frequently. But the less flexible you are, the less accommodating your schedule is for buyers who want to see as many houses as they can in one trip.

Wouldn’t it be a shame if your perfect buyer never got to see your house because you couldn’t fit them in? Of course that doesn’t you can’t say no, but if you find yourself limiting access as much as you are granting it you can be sure some buyers wil just move on.


3. Listing on the MLS is not good enough

While many buyers browse the public MLS system, or have new listings sent to them, there are still many buyers looking to get an edge by viewing local classifieds, reading some printed publications or accepting updates from an agent who can search the private (agents and their clients only) MLS for home matching their criteria.

The public MLS typically does not show new listings until roughly 48 hours after their initial posting. Sometimes it can take up to 3 full days. That is why many buyers count on agents to inform them of brand new listings as they are posted.

So when you are choosing an agent, it is a good idea to ask them what steps they will take to get the word out about your listing.


4. You have the wrong agent

It is worth noting that a buying agent may not have the experience you need to sell your property. This is too big of a deal to leave to anyone, even if they are a friend. Don’t be afraid to ask about your agent’s experience.

They should have years of experience in marketing a listing, and they should have just as much experience negotiating with a buyer. Things go a lot smoother with an agent who has dealt with many of these high pressure situations, and you will have a much better experience working with a seasoned realtor.


5. Poor Presentation

Some lived in houses do not show as well as others. While it is not always reasonable to empty a house and stage it, it never hurts to get busy and remove clutter, perform various cosmetic enhancements and touch ups. And it is also important to do this before photos are taken.

For some buyers, a lot of clutter and cosmetic flaws suggests to them that a place has not been well cared for. They may not be right, but you never get a second chance to make a first impression.


How Can You Avoid All These Pitfalls?

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Sources:

7 reasons your house may not be selling  By: Mark Weislede    Toronto Star: Real Estate, June 6, 2013

Why Isn't My Home Selling?        By Elizabeth Weintraub, About.com: Home Buying and Selling

10 Reasons Your House Is Not Selling    Dave Conners, Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Check Realty