Being in the industry since 2010, I had already purchased and sold a few homes before I became an agent. Truth be told, I was young, didn’t really know much about mortgages or selling. I played the part. I had 2 sales of my own homes under my belt. Could it really be different as an agent? Both past properties sold within days of listing. I never staged my home in Quebec and my house here in Halifax was vacant. The pain of prepping for showings for foreign to me, until it came time to sell mine. UGG!
It my short career thus far, I have probably sold over 400 houses. 99% of my sellers, staged, painted, prepped and fluffed. Heck some of them renovated kitchens. Our Halifax market was in some what of a recession. We had buyers with great mortgage rates, down payments were ready to go, but the Halifax buyer had no desire to buy. I was determined to have my listings place their best foot forward to attract a buyer immediately and want them to put pen to paper.
Over the years I would hear from my sellers asking about feedback from the latest showing. They were looking for updates from the agent who said there was interest. They seemed to be frustrated. So much work was placed into the showing and not to hear from the agent… well it was atrocious. Sadly, I agree.
In 2019, my partner and I decided to sell my home. I had purchased a condo and we were prepared to move into it, until our new home was built in 2021. I called my stager Lisa to give me the list of what I needed to do.
Paint the whole house was first on the list. Move the upstairs office to the basement she said. Get a new bedspread and pillows. We did what we were told. I had purchased this home in 2007 and had rented out the basement for 10 years. It had a drop ceiling. Oak kitchen. Dated flooring and it kinda smelled. To list my house where I wanted it to be, I convinced my partner to gut the entire thing. 12k later it sparkled. New flooring, paint, lights and an Ikea bar kitchenette. All brand new for the perfect buyer. My deck outside was a little sketchy so I paid for a structural engineer to suggest what needed to be done to stabilize it. 3 large steel tie bars later and you can drive a transport truck on it.
Let me tell you how much my house loved me and did not want to be sold. The dishwasher did not clean the dishes properly anymore. The stove refused to lock for self cleaning and would turn off in the middle of cooking. The washer, the motor blew. The microwave refused to heat. 4 appliances from Nov 2018 thru till July 2019 had to be replaced. Oh yes, the roof and the BPO shingles the death of me. Murphy’s Law would have it, the shingles I had were part of a lawsuit as they were deteriorating. My house was only built in 2006, the roof now needed to be replaced. Everything that could have gone wrong did. Apart from the 12k reno in the basement, the appliances and the roof.... I am into this now for over 30k just to sell! I hope no ones asks about my pricing.
In April the sign went on the lawn FOR SALE. I had a teammate list it as I can negotiate with the devil himself for my clients, but for me, it was best to sit quietly. I was a complete mess. A roller coaster of emotions. I was excited. I was stressed. I felt violated. I felt I was being judged by other agents. What in the heck did I get myself into?
Introduce the first showing. Feedback: “we like it, but need to sell our home first” I thought why in gods name are you looking at homes? You have no idea if your house will sell. Waste of time.
2nd Showing feedback “we need a bigger yard” Well I told the agent that the yard was small, kids in our area play on the cul du sac. Waste of time.
3rd Showing Feedback, “we don’t like the area, but can we buy your furniture?” Sweet baby Jesus. You know I live in Spryfield, did you not pay attention to the address? My furniture, go to Wayfair and no I am not selling you my bedroom set for $500 when I purchased it for $7k in Nov. Was I swearing a little…… a little is an understatement.
4th showing….. Crickets. No feedback. No follow up. Nothing.
5th showing. We did not go in the house, we do not like the street.
6th showing, the price is too high. Well my thought was the house on the corner behind me sold for $419 and no updates and much older. BUT... here is what set me ablaze, different zone. I am going to rip my hair out!
Ok, now I am done with this! Don’t these people know that it takes 3 hrs to clean this monstrosity. The house looked like a page in a magazine. I even went as far to set the table on the deck and have soft spa music play in the background. I HATE THIS.
Then a light switch turned on in my head. OMG, my POOR CLIENTS. They have to go thru this crap. Omg OMG OMG!!!!!
Going thru this exercise of trying to sell my home was the best thing that could have ever happened to me as a real estate agent. I appreciate my sellers now more than EVER! So what is the point?
BUYERS: don’t waste a seller’s time. Look at the pictures, pay attention to the area, examine the lay of the land. It takes real effort for a seller to prep their home for you.
AGENTS: take the time to give good feedback. Don’t tell the seller there is interest when you still have 10 other homes to view, you have no idea of what is next. Give feedback that can help the seller. Stating the infamous line of “Nice home but not for them”, grates on a seller’s last nerve.
Needless to say, Ben, Daisy, Buttons and I remain put. We will try our luck again in 2021 to sell.