Before I got my licence in real estate, I was working with a coach to explore some different career options I was considering. At one point I told my coach that I had always been fascinated by real estate but gee, the market wasn’t very good so maybe that wasn’t such a hot career choice. I’ll never forget what his answer to that comment was:
“Karri, that is the stupidest excuse I’ve ever heard in my life for not doing something. Since when does ‘the market’ have @#$%! to do with your success or failure as a real estate agent?”
I signed up for real estate school the next day.
In Lethbridge real estate, trying to time the market is… a waste of time.
External market forces have a lot less to do with the sale of your home than you think. For sure they matter, but only insofar as how we are going to tackle that listing−and eventual sale−together.
On average, approximately 100-120 homes trade hands each month on the Lethbridge City MLS®. Is it busier in Spring? Yes. Will you fetch a bit more money and sell faster when the market is busy? Probably. Does market supply and demand impact how you will price your home? Absolutely. Will the market cycle down and cycle up over time? Of course. And, barring an apocalyptic event or economic shock, people will keep on buying and selling homes every month, without fail.
So is timing your listing really that crucial? Or do you just need to get one qualified buyer to make an attractive offer and successfully close the transaction?
Figuring out ‘the perfect time to list’ misses the point…
The most strategic (and honest) real estate agents will look at your home not as a listing but as a potential sale. To determine if a home is saleable (and if I can earn a
living commission), I will ask the following mission-critical questions:
1) Can you afford to sell your home? (If you’re underwater, you may not be able to sell.)
2) How motivated are you to sell your home?
3) Are you willing to DO what I recommend before going to market?
I can list your cardboard box for sale if you really want me to, but that doesn’t mean I should. In fact, before I get anywhere near a listing agreement, I would like to understand why you even want to talk with a listing agent in the first place. Then, if you are truly motivated to sell your home, I want to understand what you’re willing to do to get an offer on the table and ensure a smooth transaction. Granted, I’m here to stick handle the deal from list to close, but we’re a team. Without seller cooperation, that sign in the yard is little more than advertising for me.
These conversations aren’t always sunshine and rainbows, but a good agent is willing to have them with you. Maybe your air conditioning unit is busted. Maybe the fence is falling down. Maybe you have red walls in a neighbourhood where no one likes red walls.
Maybe your expectations about price are not in line with market reality. Or maybe you want to sell your home but your wife would rather have a root canal and isn’t going anywhere.
There are countless factors that go into the decision to list your home and then prepare for that listing. The right real estate agent will support the decision-making process rather than push you into the market before you’re ready, if you’re wanting to sell at all.
So… is it ever the “perfect time to list?”
Only you and your REALTOR® can decide.