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Toronto Real Estate Blog
Don’t Help Sell Your Competition
Monday, 14 November 2011, 01:42:32 PM

I met with a prospective client, Janet who wanted to sell her cute bungalow just north of the Danforth.  She was looking to move into the better school district just West of where they were. When I viewed her home, I asked her to point out many of the upgrades she had done since she bought it.  As we sat down, I asked her to tell me a little more about her motivation to sell, as I wanted to get a better idea of the bigger picture.

Before asking me what I thought her home was worth, she said that she needed $450,000 to make the move. She must have seen my facial expression completely change as she asked me if that was realistic. I gave her a copy of the Home Selling Guide that I wrote and included in it was a list of recent sales. I pointed out that the range in her neighbourhood for a similar type of property was between $410k to $420k. No bungalow in her area has ever sold for more.

She kept going back to what she “needed” to sell for to make the move. I could tell she was getting very emotional.  I felt like her dream-squasher, telling her the price was not realistic.

I said to Janet that the only people that would benefit by listing her home at $450,000 would be her competition.

“What do you mean – the competition?” She asked.

I explained that an average buyer views 12.4 homes in a particular neighbourhood before submitting an offer.  If her house was priced outside the range of what it is worth, then it would make the other homes on the market more appealing and help those sell – not hers!

I invited Janet to view 3 homes for sale in her neighbourhood with me the following day to see what I was talking about. I asked her try to view these homes as a possible buyer and compare against her home priced at $450,000.

Janet was very quiet and didn’t say much during these viewings.  Once we left the third home Janet turned to me and said: “My house won’t sell for $450,000. I can see that now.”

Janet agreed that it’s very important to know who you’re competing against. On the advice of her mortgage broker, Janet decided holding off on selling her house until the spring. By that time she’ll have full-time hours at work, which will help her qualify for the mortgage she needs to make the move.

I know Janet really appreciated the honest no b.s. advice that I gave her. My business is completely built on referrals and I will not make any unrealistic promises I can not keep.

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