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George’s Advice: If you are thinking of selling in 2022, list early

Sellers in Centre Wellington wise to get a jump start on the year, says George Mochrie, REALTOR®
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Welcome to 2022! I was hoping this article was going to say how it was such a relief that life has finally gone (mostly) back to normal, but it seems like Groundhog Day as far as COVID goes. But things WILL get better in 2022—promise.

Again, I would like to take this opportunity to thank my clients for their ongoing support and confidence in my services. Thanks to you, I was able to continue as Centre Wellington’s #1 listing realtor again in 2021.

With respect to the real estate market… there is absolutely nothing normal about it. We ended off 2021 with historically low inventory, with only TWO homes for sale under $1 million in ALL of Centre Wellington. Over the last 60 days of 2021, we saw some record-selling prices paid for the few homes that did hit the market as a result of the extreme supply-demand imbalance.

Various industry analysts are projecting annual national average increases in the 9-10% range this year, but this will vary by region. Locally, I believe we will actually see peak pricing in the first four months of 2022, driven by the continued low inventory. I’m not suggesting overall housing prices will decrease in the final half of 2022, but rather we will see record prices paid on certain homes and see much of the annual increase occur in the first 4 months of 2022 in our area.

So, my advice to sellers in 2022 is simple: rather than wait until the end of April or May, if possible, consider moving up the listing of your home to January or February (I understand this will not work for some). This is simply a case where I strongly believe that sellers who list early this year will be rewarded.

Yes, your home will look better outside in April when things start to bloom, but if that is the only reason you are waiting, don’t—sell when there is less inventory (and less competition) on the market. Selling your home now with a closing date of 90-120 days from the sale date is not unusual in this market. The buyers are out there now—who knows what the last half of 2022 will bring. (Higher interest rates will be one change that starts to happen.)

Using an experienced realtor to sell your home in this market is key. You can try to sell it yourself or go the discount route, but the market is so unusual, you will leave money on the table if you do not handle the marketing, sale and offer process in a way that a top realtor can provide. Yes, commission is a lot of money.

But the important part is what you net from the sale. An experienced top realtor who really knows the local market will negotiate a result you simply cannot obtain otherwise. As I have stated before, selling a home for $20,000 less than you could have in order to not pay $10,000 commission is not saving money.

If you are interviewing realtors, make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Ask what services they will provide. What is their marketing plan? It’s easy to offer a lower rate if they simply stick a for sale sign in the ground and hope for the best. Professional photos and ONLINE FLOORPLANS are a must in today’s real estate world.

Paid online advertising to market your home is essential. Staging (and not just staging advice) should be included. Do they have handymen and cleaners to assist where needed?

And it’s not just about getting the highest selling price. A selling process that is as stress-free as possible and ensuring the sale actually CLOSES without issues are just as important.

Have questions? Simply want to know what your home is worth, whether you plan on selling now or not? Feel free to call me anytime at 519-766-3716 to arrange for a confidential, no-obligation discussion.

Until next month, take care.

George

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