What to Know Before Selling Your Windermere Home

What to Know Before Selling Your Windermere Home

In a community as tight-knit and fast-growing as Windermere, making your home stand out from the others can be a challenge. As demand rises for the numerous, distinctive properties in this master-planned neighborhood, only the savviest home sellers are able to make the cut and command a sale price that their luxury home deserves. Below, we’ve put together the be-all-end-all checklist for anyone looking to sell their home — and clock in that dreamed-for sale price — in Windermere.

Collect your paperwork first

First things first, organization is key. Before hiring a real estate agent, before staging and preparing the home for sale, and long before estimating a price point, you want to gather all the relevant paperwork necessary. What exactly do you need to collect? The documents vary (and later, your realtor can help with the specifics), but at the minimum, you’ll want to include:
  • The outstanding and pay-off balance on your mortgage (if this applies)
  • A timeline of any home improvements and renovations/repairs
  • Surveying information
  • Dates of any major window and flooring installations and home remodels
  • Information on the age of appliances and HVAC system
  • Roof age, information, and warranties
  • Any permits or certificates for property features like decks, sheds, and fencing

Find the perfect time

Most everyone knows that location is key when selling and buying real estate, but the time of year you list your home is nearly as important. Market trends indicate that the spring months of March, April, and May command the highest sales prices, but researching local, rather than regional or national, property prices can be a better indicator.

However, you might not be prepared to sell in spring. This isn’t a big deal, and it’s always preferable to sell when you’re ready rather than rushing through the process. Analyze what time of year you’re most free to engage with your realtor and potential buyers, but try to avoid listing in mid-winter as many people are busy with social and family engagements.

Hire a real estate agent

This is the number one piece of advice we share with our clients, regardless of where or when you’re selling. The commission that a realtor may make on the sale of your home is negligible when you add up all the benefits of engaging a local, knowledgeable agent. For example, a realtor will be able to:
  • Research competitive selling prices for your area
  • Decrease the time on market
  • Collaborate and compete with other local agents on a first-name basis
  • Gain insights into the property’s history and past repairs/renovations
  • Deal with sellers professionally and run negotiations
When hiring a real estate agent, you’re purchasing peace of mind. You want to avoid the common pitfalls and legal complications that most first-time and independent home sellers find stressful. A realtor serves as the support system that can help you do just that.

Get your pricing right early

One reason that we see many homes hit a wall and stagnate on the market for too long is that they weren’t priced correctly from the beginning. Setting an unrealistically high price outside of a booming period of high demand is never a good idea. Indeed, over 70% of realtors said in a 2019 survey that the number one mistake individuals make in the housing market is setting the price too high.

Conducting a comparative market analysis is the best way to get an idea of what’s a realistic price and what’s out of the ballpark. Another problem you can run into emerges if you’re too attached to the asking price to negotiate with buyers. Regardless of whether you’re selling in a buyer’s or seller’s market, it’s best to go into the selling process with an open mind.

Invest in a pre-listing inspection

This piece of advice comes from experience. For every seller who goes through all the correct motions, runs proper inspections, and discloses the entire history of the house from day one, there is a seller who skimps or tries to hide problems with the property. Investing in a quality inspection lets the seller know if there’s a need for some on-the-spot repairs, and it gives the potential buyer concrete proof that you’re sharing everything you know.

Most buyers want a turnkey home they can live and sleep in from the get-go. An inspection provides everyone with the peace of mind that no sudden, expensive repairs are on the horizon. You want to make sure the inspection includes testing for radon levels, looking over the chimney, searching for mold and pests, and inspecting the septic system.

Prepare to negotiate

Keeping an open frame of mind is critical for sellers when they finally list their property and begin hosting open houses. Negotiation is the name of the game, and buyers are often won over and agree to a higher listing price simply if the seller maintains a flexible command of market demand. There is much you can do to arrive at a reasonable, if not aspirational, listing price.

Today’s buyers have access to more information online than ever before. That’s why it’s good to expect that any bidding war or negotiation will require you to be as well-informed as possible about the state of the home. Once again, this is where a good real estate agent can make the difference between an average sale and a huge success.

Declutter and depersonalize

Put yourself in the place of a potential buyer of your home for a moment. What is it that you would want to see most? One thing almost every buyer wants is to be able to imagine themselves living in the space rather than imagine the sellers living in a house. In order to invite in more buyers, it’s important to distance yourself from the property and depersonalize your home. The first step should be to remove as much clutter as possible. This involves:
  • Eliminating personal effects, family photos, and mementos
  • Repainting rooms in neutral tones
  • Clearing shared spaces like the living room and kitchen
  • Filling empty spaces with fresh flowers or art
  • Cleaning cabinets, closets, and counters
  • Opening windows to let in more natural light
  • Removing excess furniture in high-traffic zones
Once the home is more appealing to a broad range of buyers, you’re in a better position to provide them with a blank canvas they can fill with their own memories. While there are pros and cons of conducting open houses, it’s always a smart idea to declutter and depersonalize regardless of the kind of buyers you’re trying to attract.

Curb appeal is vital to impressing buyers at first sight. Invest in simple landscaping upgrades, repaint the exterior of the house (or simply the front door), and invite some friends over to ask them if they notice any areas for improvement on the property.

Know your buyers

Speaking of buyers, you should always spend extra time learning more about yours. The first advantage of doing this is that it can bring you closer to the buyer and facilitate a cordial, open relationship. Call it a calm and agreeable “passing of the torch.” You want to accommodate buyers as best as you can, and part of that process involves doing a little research.

Inquire into their financial situation and, less broadly, ask for a letter of pre-approval from their lender. When operating with cash deals, request proof of funds (POF) to ensure that they are qualified buyers. Get to know your buyers’ realtor as well. It’s always beneficial to get everybody’s hopes and desires into the open, so negotiations are more fruitful and the sale goes as smoothly as possible.

Spend more time on staging and listing photos

Lastly, we suggest that sellers invest more time in the listing process. You want to hire a professional photographer for the listing photos. Since the majority of buyers first cast eyes on your property online, it’s critical to make a good first impression. You should also consider spending a portion of your budget on staging. According to a 2021 National Association of Realtors study, home staging consistently leads to higher sale prices and faster sales. Staging a home can be as simple as making a clean sweep of the home and cleaning/sanitizing the property yourself, or you can hire a professional service to stage the house for you. During this process, you’ll want to:
  • Remove unpleasant odors
  • Ensure that harmful allergens are eliminated from the air and furniture
  • Declutter high-traffic areas like the kitchen and living room
  • Organize and simplify displayed artworks
  • Clean up the entryway and install new, working fixtures and hardware
  • Consider planting new greenery or shrubs

Get in touch with a realtor today

If you have any questions about selling your Windermere home or would like more information about Windermere luxury homes for sale, contact Luxury Edmonton today!

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We are committed to excellence at every step of the process and because we are a boutique real estate brokerage, we can leverage our decades of experience with some of the largest and most prestigious global companies, and combine it with a more personalized approach and experience.

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