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  • Writer's pictureJen Bedard

The Only Guide You’ll Need to Sell your Home Like a Pro


Are you looking to sell your Niagara-based home? No matter the real estate climate, it doesn’t have to be an intimidating or complicated process. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you sell quickly, efficiently and for the right price.


(And congratulations on your upcoming adventure to your new home!)


Get a Free Home Evaluation

Selling your home does not need to be your new full-time job; but it is my job - and one I love!


Unlock the true value of your home and maximize your return on investment with a complimentary consultation.


Not only do I know your neighbourhood like the back of my hand, I also know how to sell it to the right buyer. Plus, I can give you expert insight about any stage of the selling process, saving you from countless Googles and second-hand advice that may not be up-to-date, factually correct or helpful.


In addition to learning the proper price for your home, a complimentary consultation with me also provides you with completed research on comparable nearby properties and a successful selling strategy that will have your listing standing out for all the right reasons.


Don’t Wait for the “Right Time”

Now is the right time! While the COVID-19 pandemic caused a major moving trend that saw a mass Ontarian exodus from larger cities, statistics show that in these back-to-work times, many Ontarians are still looking for in-province suburban properties to call home.


These moves are being influenced not only by work-from-home job flexibility but also the desire for larger family spaces at a more affordable price.


Sales in smaller cities such as St. Catharines for example, are also being influenced by the continuing influx of migrants to Canada, particularly skilled workers and families seeking safer life outside of Ukraine.


Speaking of time, the average number of days on market (DOM) in Niagara jumped from 26 days in December of 2021 to 71 days in December of 2022, and the average sale price dipped from $753,000 to $655,000 in the same amount of time. Despite the dip in sale price this past year, using the same metrics, the average sale price is still up from all previous years (2020 - $610,629; 2019 - $489,233; 2018 - $409,471)


Prep the Home

The most time-consuming part of the selling process? Getting the home itself sale ready.


Fear not, I provide you with a room-by-room checklist, complete with suggestions for improving curb appeal, general interior guidelines and even the best tasks to perform before any open houses or private showings.


While an added cost, it may be of benefit to your sale to contract any necessary repairs and/or decor updates (ex. painting) out to experts. The nicer the home, the higher the potential profit, and the faster the sale.


If you require storage for any boxes or items-to-be-hidden, temporary storage locker rentals can be a great option. U-Haul and other moving truck services commonly offer complimentary or discounted storage with truck rental bookings.


Furthermore, when you list with me, you’ll be provided with a Bluetooth Sentri-Lockbox for safe, trackable in and out showing activity during the duration of your listing.


Stage the Home

You know how you love when your home is furnished and decorated; so do prospective buyers. Help them imagine themselves living in your home with professional staging services.


Pre-listing preparation with me includes a complimentary staging consultation and staging when beneficial, helping create the ideal living space for anyone. Staging is known to decrease days on market while increasing the sale price.


Put Up the Pink Sign

Your potential home buyer could be someone who drives by one time or every day. Alert the availability of your home and attract potential buyers with my signature McGarr pink sign on the front of the property.


Create a Beautiful, Visual Virtual Home Browsing Experience

Hand in hand with personal home prep and professional staging, is photography of the result. Just as people eat with their eyes before attending a restaurant, home buyers dream with their eyes online before attending an open house or booking a private viewing.


I happily provide my sellers with professional photography and videography for your listing. I also harness the production power of Matterport to create a virtual tour for online home browsers. Listing photographs and information are also advertised in local and national newspapers and journals for additional offline and online real estate advertising when beneficial.


Speaking of print, customized Feature Flyers, as well as helpful Neighbourhood Reports, will also be produced, providing buyers with details on nearby schools, facilities, green spaces and amenities.


You also have the option of adding your home to McGarr Realty’s “Tour Tuesday,” allowing for cross-promotion of your home by other realtors to their buyers right off the bat!


Host Open Houses & Private Showings

For many buyers, seeing is believing. While some may be willing to buy sight unseen, most prospective home purchasers want to step foot on their potential property.

Open houses are valuable for some listings, not all, but when I see the value, I often ask to begin scheduling open houses starting the weekend after your listing has gone live on the MLS, in print and on social media.


For buyer comfort, I recommend you and your family be visibly absent from the home during any showings. Buyers can feel awkward or rushed walking around, being seen by others in the home, and often feel like a scheduled inconvenience.


In hotter markets, your home could see multiple private showings a day, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop working. If you work from home, consider renting a desk at a nearby co-working space or taking advantage of local businesses with complimentary Wi-Fi such as public libraries or coffee shops.


Review and Negotiate Offers

Soon, it will be time to sit down and go over your offers. There is no way to know in advance when an offer will be submitted and how many offers you can expect during the duration of your listing, but details of all offers will be presented to you upon receipt. all parties tracking or who have shown interest in your property are alerted to allow for counter-offer opportunities, I then help you choose the best offer for your property, negotiating with buyers and their realtors on your behalf.


Final Finishes

Once an offer is accepted, a deposit is collected, and conditions are dealt with and completed (if any).


Upon firming up the sale, and the installation of my bright signature SOLD sign on your front lawn, I complete the remaining paperwork and forward the necessary documents to your lawyer and your mortgage provider.