We have been in the Toronto real estate business for well over a decade. We have seen the days of MLS listings pictures from a Blackberry phone a decade ago (those cameras were poor!), to close-up views of toilets, to no pictures at all. Being that we see “behind the scenes” in the Toronto real estate world, we have seen it all! We know what works and what doesn’t work when investing in a condo. We know the mistakes that sellers and their agents make. Here is a list of six mistakes to avoid when selling a condo in Toronto!
1. Selling The Condo Without An Agent
This adage is perfect: A penny wise and a pound foolish. Choosing to “save” on the commission rarely works. More often than not, it backfires on the seller. That being said, the seller may never know that fact. Some condo owners think that they can sell their condo. With the increase in popularity of FSBOs (For Sale By Owner websites), they believe that it’s easy. It isn’t. Period. Each time that we have dealt with an owner selling their place, it has been problematic in terms of getting access to the condo, submitting an offer, etc. At the end of the day, those sellers that our clients purchased from missed out on more money. Frankly, the seller knows the reality of their outcome. The professional real estate agent who brought the buyer knows how well the buyer did despite the seller’s beliefs.
2. Hiring An Inexperienced Agent
Hiring an agent that does not have a successful background is a considerable risk. Just because an agent has sold a condo nearby and is eager does not ensure that you will succeed. We see this all the time. Not many Realtors do the above and beyond training to stay sharp and up-to-date with market trends, marketing, strategy and communication skills. We regularly see condo sellers choose a Realtor that doesn’t do the necessary work to help their client. How do we know this? Because we see the errors when we see the MLS listing, the showing challenges, and offer night. It can be a mess. We end up doing the heavy lifting on the ineffective Realtor’s behalf. Interview and challenge the agent about what they do to improve as top producing agents. They are worth every penny they charge.
3. Bad Pictures
Pictures tell a thousand words. And virtual tours even more! Condo buyers fall in love with the look and feel of a space. If your condo doesn’t show amazingly well and the pictures are not taken by an exceptional pro photographer, then you are not going to do as well as you could have. Low lighting, bad angles, missed nuances of a room or feature, too few images, the list goes on…you mustn’t have an amateur overseeing the photographs.
4. No Marketing Plan
No marketing equals no success. The marketing starts before the condo listing goes live on MLS. It’s essential to get your ducks in a row. Only a great agent can help this happen. It takes a lot more thinking and creativity than you may expect. Like any pro, they make it look easy. Fail to market the property effectively, and then you miss your buyer segment entirely; your condo sits on the market for too long, languish and dropping in value over time.
5. Sloppy Go-To-Market Strategy
The strategy is closely linked with marketing. Get this wrong, and you are left behind, no matter how beautiful your condo is. Knowing what the buyer demographic is, recent sales – and why they sold for what they did or should have, articulation of the features and benefits – i.e. unique benefits of the condo are essential. Our extensive background in International brand advertising is a real strong suit for our sellers.
6. Hubris & Magical Thinking
No matter how amazing you think, your condo is, defer to the professional Realtor’s viewpoint. They know what buyers want and they see hundreds, if not thousands of your competition annually. They may agree with your point of view. And if they don’t agree, they will professionally and guide you into getting your space into’s its finest light – therefore elevating it to what you always saw the upside to be.
As for magical or wishful thinking: no amount of magical thinking will create success. The hard work and insights of a great realtor are essential. They may make it look “easy” or “magical,” but the best is skilled enough to make it appear that way. Yet, behind the scenes, an exceptional amount of work went into that successful sale.
The above mistakes really shouldn’t’ happen. There is no reason for them ever occur. Simply put, hire not just any realtor; hire the best—the Realtor who will be honest, direct and professional each step of the way. Your condo investment is worth a lot of money. Let’s ensure that you capitalize on the sale of your investment and ensure that you can take that money forward into your next move.
Get an excellent condo selling strategy by contacting us. Contact us with any questions; selling a condo can be seamless and enjoyable. We can help, start here.