Price Your London Ontario Home Correctly

I keep track of houses in London that are for sale, how long it takes to sell( days on the market) and what percentage of the sale price to the asking price. What is the reason why some houses sell for 98%-99% of the asking price or more and are sold within 26 days and others receive 95-96% of the asking price & are on the market an average 83 days or do not sell at all?

No offers yet on your house in London

 When a house is not priced correctly the first day it goes on the market and if the price is too high, this is usually what happens:

  • LOW Final Sales Price – An overpriced house, still on the market beyond the average selling time, usually leads to a lower selling price. To sell it, you will have to reduce the price, sometimes several times. In the end,you’ll likely get less than if it had been properly priced at the start.
  • Limited Buyers – Potential buyers may not view your house, because it would be out of their buying range.
  • Limited Showings – Real estate agents may be reluctant to view your house or bring their clients because the listing is stale and buyers wonder what is wrong with the place.
  • Wasted Time and Energy – For example, a buyer who gets a bank appraisal on an overpriced house will quickly determine that they’ve wasted their time because the appraisal will not support the inflated sales price.

Weeks on Market For a House to Sell

Well kept houses in London Ontario,  properly priced when you first list it will always get you a quicker sale and  97% of the time the best price! 

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Eliminate Fear When Buying a London Ontario House

Most house buyers have many fears when getting ready to buy a home, whether it is the first time buyer or a couple who have bought and sold 5 homes in their lifetime.

fear of buying a home

Most of those fears are normal and that is a good thing. However:

F false

 E evidence

 A appearing 

 R real

I have worked with hundreds of home buyers over the years and I have found that most of their fears were of the unknown or worst of all, here say by family, friends and co-workers. My role as a professional Realtor is to address those fears, acknowledge them and then overcome those fears with factual information, not my perceptions but the real world of real estate reality.

The fear of buying the wrong house, over-paying for it, defects, financing and location can in 99% of the time, can be overcome with due diligence.

The fear of being happy in that home, entertaining and appreciating in value is internal and way above my paygrade to offer advice!

In the end, common sense, being practical and keeping your emotions in check will be your best friends.

Downsizing to London Ontario? What Next?

  “We’re thinking about downsizing to a smaller home in London Ontario. Having been out of the real estate market for many years, how do we find the right place and someone to walk us through the steps?”

Finding A Great Realtor in London Ontario

When it comes to buying or selling a home in London Ontario, one of the first steps many people take is choosing a real estate professional to work with. Much like you’ll be searching for a home to meet your needs, you’ll want to take a few steps to choose the real estate professional who is right for you.

Regardless of how you find the real estate professional, it’s always a good idea to meet with at least a few different representatives before selecting the one you’d like to work with. When you have your short list and are ready to meet with a few candidates, consider asking these questions:

1. What is your experience? Experience is about more than how many years someone has been in business. Take the time to learn about the types of properties they typically work with, which neighbourhoods they work in and how many homes in the type you are looking for they helped buy or sell in the past year or two.

2. What is your approach to the buying or selling process?For the buying side of things, how will the representative search for suitable properties and what is their approach to negotiations? When selling, how will your home be marketed to help attract the right prospective buyers? By understanding their approach, you’ll know what to expect and will be able to determine which representative’s philosophy and methods align with your preferences.

3. What services will be included? Discuss your particular needs and expectations with prospective representatives to ensure they are able to provide the services you want. For example, when selling, will the representative have professional photos taken of your home or prepare multimedia promotional materials? How will they promote and market your home? Understanding exactly what services will be provided, and later documenting them in your written contract, will help avoid misunderstandings later on.

4. What are the commissions or fees that I will need to pay? Commissions and fees can vary between brokerages and the services provided, so be sure to understand what will be provided and what it will cost. Keep in mind that, as with most things, you pay for what you get.

5. Do you have references? As with most job interviews, getting in touch with references is an important step before hiring someone. Speaking with past clients is a great way to learn more. Were past clients pleased with their experience? Was the representative responsive and easy to get in touch with? Would they recommend them to others?

Buying and selling a home is a major decision, so it’s key to take the time to find the right representative for you. Whether it’s homes within a certain price range, in a specific neighbourhood, income properties or condos, it’s smart to find a representative experienced in buying and selling your kind of place.

 Ask these 11 Questions Before You Hire Any Realtor

How Not To Price Your Home in London Ontario

            How not to price your home in London Ontario

  • Take your mortgage balance.
  • Add your credit cards.
  • Throw in your cars.
  • Add a generous portion of all the money you borrowed from relatives.
  • Pile on your down payment for that other house you have your eye on.
  • Last but not least, give yourself an extra $25,000 for just for being you.
  • Get a blank look on your face when you are told by a professional listing Realtor that the buying public doesn’t care what you owe.
  • Wait
  • Wait some more.
  • Decide you’ll stay after all.

​                           how to sell a home in London Ontario

Here’s a better plan:

  • Find out what homes like yours have sold for in the past 90 days
  • Price the house at that number or 5% less.
  • Pack your bags.

The buying public is utterly ambivalent about what you owe to who as it relates to pricing your property. They only care about their own needs. What you need isn’t on their radar, and if you aren’t priced in line with the current perception of value, your listing will get stale and sit unsold for months as you chase the market.

  Chasing the market is always being one price point behind what the public is willing to pay. You enter the market at $459,900 when you really ought to be at $449,900. You lower to $449,000 when the market for the house is $439,000. By the time you hit $429,000, it could be 2 months later and the public isn’t willing to pay more than $420,000. (True story)

Each price drop seems harsh, but your real enemy was you starting out too high.

overpricing a house

  Sellers are in a war of attrition with buyers who lurk before they call, call before they look, and look at everything before they buy. You won’t get a call, look or offer until your price conforms to what the public deems fair.

The only offers overpriced homes get is low ball offers from bold types who wouldn’t pay as much as fair minded people would on a fairly priced home. The only way to win the battle is to price your home at the market price and not allow your ego or personal preferences to cloud your objectivity.

Why go into a battle if you cannot win?

Retiring To London Ontario Is On The Rise

How the wealthy are redefining their retirement and the concept of a “traditional” retirement has changed and I am seeing that retiring to London Ontario is on the rise.

When retirement schemes were first introduced at the end of the 19th century, retirees were lucky to live just a few more years after stopping work. But increased life expectancy means that today’s retirees are often enjoying 20 to 30 years of leisure at the end of their working lives.

london ontario retirees

In Barclays Wealth Insights and their wonderful insightful presentation The Age Illusion How the Wealthy are Redefining Their Retirement” you will find it quite useful not only for yourself personally but potential as a service provider to these people who are sometimes called “Nevertirees

Assessing the impact of the Nevertiree and understanding the role that I, as a Realtor and being  a Nevertiree is exciting and something I can relate to.

(The Nevertiree part, not the wealthy part!)

active retirees

I have many clients who have started second or third careers, or are still growing their business and really enjoying life.

Their real estate needs are quite different than our traditional retiree and the last two years, especially the last 6 months in London Ontario, real estate has  been in demand, especially a one floor home, be it a house or a condo, have been sought after in the $500,000 plus range.

I would say that the majority of my clients are in that high end range which I truly appreciate, not the dollar amount but their vibrancy, maturity, no nonsense approach and who appreciate a professional to help them!

Real Estate Appraisal Myths

London Ontario Real Estate Myths

Real estate appraisers work with their clients to determine an opinion of  market value of a property to finance or refinance their clients’ mortgage. This value is a critical piece of information and there is a lot at stake in its accuracy — for the REALTOR®, the lender and the home owner!

Obtaining a reliable appraisal that is unbiased, independent and based on comprehensive research and analysis is key to the success of this transaction.

There is an overall misunderstanding about how an appraiser arrives at a market value, sometimes leading to a misconception that “the appraiser killed the deal”. This article will debunk these myths and provide additional insight and perspective from a designated appraiser’s point of view.

Myth #1: The purchase price of the property is the same as the appraised market value.

Reality: The appraised market value may not be the same as the selling price of the home- it may be higher, it may be lower.  Individual real estate markets can be volatile and are impacted by the economic conditions of the market.  For example, in a “sellers’ market”, or when there are multiple offers on a home, an inflated selling price above the appraised market value can result.

“Bidding wars” may skew the true market value of the home, when similar substitute properties are not available in the market.  A multiple-offer scenario may be good for the seller, the real estate agent and the mortgage broker in the short term, but in the long-term, the purchaser may face challenges when selling the property in less active market conditions.

Having an opinion of value that is obtained through comprehensive research of the market over time provides the property owner and lender with a realistic value. An appraised value helps to ensure that all concerned – sellers, buyers and lenders – make informed decisions. Consumers and lenders should be wary of selling prices that are inflated – either through multiple offers or other local market factors.

Myth #2:  Appraisers only consider past market/sales data when determining the value of a property.

Reality:  To provide a reliable market value, AIC-designated appraisers consider a number of factors as such as:

  • Sales of the subject property within the last three years;
  • Past sales of comparable properties to the subject property;
  • Comparable properties that are currently for sale; and
  • Current market conditions.

Adjustments are made based on the analysis of the comparable properties which rely on market-derived elements of comparison including property size and other factors.

One of the key requirements under Canadian Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (CUSPAP) is for the appraiser to conduct a three-year sales history and a one-year listing history search and analysis of the subject property. This data considers private sales (non MLS) transactions as well as those on MLS. Other data sources, such as title and property registries, are also reviewed to ensure the most comprehensive and reliable market value is obtained.

For more detailed information about the various methodologies used in real estate appraisals, please view AIC’s  Industry Guide to Understanding the Fundamentals of Real Estate Appraisal.

Myth #3: The appraiser is influenced by the client’s need for a specific value.

Reality: An AIC-designated appraiser has a professional and ethical responsibility to provide an independent and unbiased opinion of the value of a property.  Their work will produce an estimate of market value being the most probable price level – irrespective of the selling price or a desire to “meet” a certain value.

All AIC members must comply with AIC’s CUSPAP, a Code of Conduct and Regulations. As professionals, AIC members are obligated to prepare their work in compliance with these standards.

Myth #4:  When a homeowner is completing renovations they can expect that the value of their home will rise proportionately to the investment.

Reality:  The return on investment depends on the added value of the renovations, the quality of the renovations, and the neighbourhood’s market conditions. Unique designs or improvements that are uncommon for a particular market may even adversely impact the selling price of a home; therefore, the full return on the investment will likely not be obtained.

Obtaining an expert opinion of value from an appraiser will provide an objective perspective on the marketability of the property.

The above was written by The Appraisal Institute of Canada

Do Not Overpay When Buying a Home in London Ontario

Overpaying when buying a home in London Ontario over the past few months is occurring more often than not and I have heard the following statements from buyers and Realtors.

happy buyers

 

  • “There is nothing I can do about it”.
  • “That’s just the way the real estate market is right now.”

Really?

Learned helplessness is a condition in which a buyer adapts to the scarcity mindset, the fear of loss and instant gratification and overpays for a house in London Ontario and feel that there is nothing they can do about it and that the acceptance of their offer is totally out of their control.

Yes, the real estate market in London Ontario is vibrant and as a Realtor, that is quite positive yet the consequences of overzealous buyers and their representatives actions will have a negative effect , as history has proven over and over that the axiom “What goes up must come down”, holds true.

As a home buyer in London Ontario, you have choices and there are strategies you can take to ensure you do not over pay and get caught up in the frenzy.

If you never ever want to overpay for real estate, I will not let you!

London Ontario Real Estate Down a Bit in August

892 homes in London Ontario and area were sold in August 2017 as reported by our London and St Thomas Association of REALTORS® (LSTAR) though the August 2017 numbers represent a slight decrease in homes sales activity.

Will this slight slowdown continue into the fall or will things pick up? I have noticed an increase of homes for sale and a decrease of out of town buyers so the heavy seller’s market we were in may settle down.

In August, a total of 712 detached homes were sold, a decrease of 11.4% from the previous year, while condominium sales were down 7.7% from 2016, with 180 units sold.

The average sales price across London and St. Thomas was $326,122, down 1.4% from the previous month.

The average year-to-date sales price was $329,745 – up 18.2% from the 2016 average home price of $279,057.

The year-to-date sales are ahead by 15.5%, with a total of 8,421 homes sold.

The best-selling house style in our area continues to be the two-storey, followed by the bungalow.

House Style Units Sold Average Price
2 Storey 208 $477,904
Bungalow 165 $251,336
Ranch 95 $377,486
Townhouse Condo 95 $210,114
High rise apt. condo 46 $215,835

The following chart is based on data taken from the Canadian Real Estate Association’s (CREA) National MLS® Report for July 2017 (the latest CREA statistics available). It provides a snapshot of how average home prices in London and St. Thomas compare to other major Ontario and Canadian centres.

Real Estate Across Canada