in real estate for over 65 years
Tips for sellers
Should I buy first?
Should you sell your property before buying another, or vice versa? Both options have their advantages and disadvantages. By carefully weighing up the pros and cons, and planning for contingencies, you’ll be able to make an informed choice.
By buying first, you’ll know in advance your new address, the exact cost of your new home, when you’ll become its owner and when the transaction will take place. You can take these factors into account when you receive a promise to purchase your current property.
It’s also possible to make a promise to purchase conditional on the sale of your property. In this case, the owner of the property you are interested in may receive another promise to purchase with no conditions attached. In order to give you priority, he’ll ask you to withdraw your condition. You will then have the choice of buying this property before selling your own, or withdrawing your offer.
In any case, it’s a good idea to plan for a temporary source of financing in case your current property doesn’t sell when you sign the purchase contract for your new one.
To sell quickly, make a good impression
Making a good impression is essential to attracting the interest of potential buyers.
The exterior of your property is very important. An attractive appearance encourages the buyer to visit the interior. Your lawn should be well groomed; in winter, have photos on hand to help visitors visualize how the yard will look in summer. Cleanliness is paramount: an uncluttered entrance and sparkling windows will also make all the difference.
Inside too, cleanliness is essential. Clean up and get rid of unnecessary objects. Remove old furniture that obstructs passageways or clutters up rooms. Clear the space so that visitors don’t feel cramped.
Does the paint need refreshing? Repainted properties often sell for more. You should also know that dark colors don’t sell well. Instead, opt for light, bright tones. The condition of carpets can also be a determining factor. If you can’t replace them, clean them to give them a facelift.
The kitchen and bathroom should be immaculate. Take the time to clean appliances and faucets, as well as the bathtub, toilet and sink. Clear the countertops and don’t leave dishes in the sink or towels on the edge of the bathtub. Let the buyer see all the storage possibilities.
Throughout the house, repair leaky faucets, faulty handles, drawers and cupboard doors that don’t close properly, etc. Replace burnt-out light bulbs and yellowed electrical plates. These small repairs are relatively inexpensive and will have a positive influence on the buyer.
Create a pleasant atmosphere
It’s essential that your home is well lit. Open the curtains during the day and turn on the lamps in the evening. If necessary, add lamps in dark corners. Make sure the house is well ventilated. Don’t repel buyers with strong odors, such as incense or spicy foods.
During the buyer’s visit, be discreet and leave your broker alone with the customer. This will make it easier for him to show off your home, and the customer will feel freer to give his comments.
Documents to have on hand
Want to sell your property quickly? Put all the odds on your side and make sure the transaction goes smoothly by keeping these essential documents handy:
- certificate of property location;
- test results for pyrite, vermiculite, iron ochre, etc., for the regions concerned;
- invoices for property renovations;
- declaration of co-ownership, if applicable;
- lease, or leases in the case of rental property;
- municipal and school tax statements;
- statement of monthly electricity costs;
- statement of fixed costs associated with the property.
The professionals involved in your transaction
When you sell a property, you have to work with a number of professionals in the real estate field, along with your broker. As the real estate broker is at the center of the real estate transaction, he is able to coordinate your transaction by collaborating with each of the other professionals involved in the purchase of your property. Here’s an overview of the services offered by each player.
The land surveyor is the only person authorized by law to delimit public and private property in Quebec. Owners can call on his services to determine the boundaries of their land by staking it, or to draw up a certificate of location.
The Ordre des arpenteurs-géomètres du Québec brings together all members of the profession.
The mortgage broker
Mortgage brokers strive to find the best mortgage contract for their clients. He can find the contract with the terms and conditions best suited to your needs: prepayment options, amortization period, financing an older home, granting a loan to a self-employed person, etc.
Mortgage brokers must hold a certificate from the Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ).
A chartered appraiser provides an objective estimate of a property’s value. His appraisals are used for insurance, mortgage, estate settlement or property division purposes. He or she can act as an expert witness in court, and his or her report is evidence of a home’s value.
To use the title of chartered appraiser and affix the initials “É.A.” next to his or her signature, the appraiser must be a member of the Ordre des évaluateurs agréés du Québec.
Before you buy a property, we strongly recommend that you have an expert inspect it.
As the building inspection profession is not subject to government control, it is advisable to call on inspectors who are members of one of the following professional orders: technologists, engineers, chartered appraisers and architects. Inspectors who are members of one of these professional orders offer the public greater security, since they are professionally supervised by their order. Professional insurance is also a condition of membership. In Quebec, the Association des Inspecteurs en Bâtiment du Québec is responsible for enforcing standards among its members.
The services of a notary are indispensable in any real estate transaction. Along with lawyers, notaries are the only professionals authorized to draw up mortgage deeds. In addition, he or she drafts the deed of sale and carries out title searches to ensure that the property purchased is free of any obligation.
Notaries are members of the Chambre des notaires du Québec.