Guide to Selling a Home in a Buyer’s Market

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Photographer: Zac Gudakov | Source: Unsplash

Like any other market, the real estate market cycles based on different variables. Part of that cycle is seasonal, especially as summer winds down and we head into the fall. And part of it is driven by interest rates, demographics, the general economy, and government incentives or policies. A seller’s market can switch fairly quickly to a buyer’s market. A buyers market is great for homebuyers as it means there are plenty of options to choose from. But for sellers, selling a home in a buyers market can seem challenging.

At any given time, people are buying and selling homes regardless of the real estate market. The reasons why people buy and sell don’t disappear because of market conditions. There are strategies that can help when the market swings out of the seller’s favour.

Here are five tips for selling a home in a buyers market:

Make sure your home is move-in ready

In a red-hot seller’s market, buyers are more willing to look past aesthetics and buy a home as-is. This is not the case in a buyer’s market. Potential buyers may skip your property if there are too many projects or repairs that need to be completed.

With plenty of options to choose from, buyers will generally want a turnkey home that has been well-maintained. This may be as simple as a fresh coat of paint on the walls and replacing outdated fixtures. Or it may mean replacing the roof or updating the kitchen.

It is important to find the right balance that will get eyes on your listing without sacrificing too much of the revenue from the sale of your home.

To help you figure out which projects will help your bottom line the most, we’ve put together a list of the top home renovations with the best return on investment.

Empty your home as much as possible

This isn’t always easy to do, particularly if you or your tenants will be living in the home during the selling process. However, it is really beneficial to declutter and depersonalize as much as possible. Consider a temporary storage unit to stow large furniture and boxes until the sale is completed.

If at all possible, wait until your tenants have vacated before listing. This will make it much easier to schedule showings and to maintain the cleanliness of the property while you are selling.

Stage your home

Professional staging isn’t typically necessary but in a buyer’s market it can really help. Good staging will help accentuate the home’s best features and will minimize its flaws.

Staging also helps buyers visual the living space at its optimal potential. While you might be using a spare room as an art studio, staging it as a nursery may appeal to a wider circle of buyers. Think of staging as another marketing tool you can use to your advantage in a more challenging market.

Price your home competitively

This is a big one. Buyers know they have the advantage of choice so, as a seller, you need to be competitive. A buyer’s market is not the time to overprice your home.

Take into consideration the prices of comparable homes that are currently on the market in your area or homes that have recently sold. If you need to sell relatively quickly (30-45 days), price your home below recent comps. If you can afford to wait, be patient and don’t panic.

The good news for home sellers in Edmonton is that home prices are not expected to decrease significantly. The economic outlook remains strong and migration into Alberta is expected to continue to increase, which will continue to drive home sales albeit not at the same dizzying pace we have seen in the past year.

Search list prices of comparable homes for sale in your neighbourhood

List with an experienced REALTOR®

An experienced real estate agent will have navigated all phases of the real estate cycle many times in their career. They’ll work with a professional photographer and will put together a listing that showcases your home at its very best.

A good REALTOR® will be able to offer personalized advice to help prep your home in advance of listing, and can help you determine the right asking price.

Selling a home is a stressful endeavor at any time, but in a buyer’s market it can be especially challenging. A mature, experienced real estate agent will help guide you through each step of the process and will be there to coach you through the highs and lows.

With nearly 20 years of experience, Wally Fakhreddine has helped Edmonton area homeowners through all the ups and downs the market has been through and more.

For professional advice on selling your home, call/text Wally at 780.238.7384

Edmonton MLS® REALTOR® EDMONTON Edmonton real estate market