How Can We Get Multiple Bids On Our Property?

Q: We want to sell our small East Vancouver detached house and try to buy a bigger place. Obviously we need get the maximum price possible for our home to be able to afford the move. So what’s our best tactic for getting multiple offers?

A: The market in Vancouver continues to roar without any signs of being tamed, so the sellers’ market will continue until one of the market variables changes.

So how do you, the seller, make sure you are able to make the most amount of money possible from the market conditions? Creating demand is a fundamental aspect of attaining multiple offers while selling Vancouver real estate, and there are many ways to do so and a pretty specific path to follow.

Step one: Pricing your property accurately is the first variable of attaining multiple offers. Your real estate agent will advise you on that. If you price too high, buyers might not show as much interest initially, and the timing of the interest at the start is massively important. You’ll want to price the property at or slightly below the market value to create as much interest from buyers as possible.

Step two: Make sure you have all the pertinent information ready for potential buyers. Having all your ducks in a row is critical to getting the best offer in. As you are listing a house, it might be a good idea to have a pre-inspection done. If you were selling a strata property, you’d want to have all the documents available. Both of these are designed to take away any questions the potential buyer has, so they are comfortable putting in an offer without conditions.

Step three: Listing your property on a Thursday or Friday but restricting access to the property until the following weekend is the third component of achieving multiple offers. Only allow the property to be shown by open house the following weekend. Getting as many people through the doors as possible within a short period of time (generally two hours) creates a feeling of anxiety between the potential buyers. Anxiety is an emotional response to the possibility of missing out, and for many buyers in Vancouver, they’ve been missing out over and over again.

Step four: Using the time before the open house, you’ll want to canvass your neighbourhood or building to generate extra interest. There is nothing Vancouverites like more than talking about real estate, especially when it pertains to the value of their property. Talk to the neighbours, let them know there is a listing for sale and an open house coming up, most will want to come by and take a look.

Step five: Ensure your agent is making the most of advertising. Traditional media has limited value these days, but it can still be effective when used properly. The Vancouver Sun has a good real estate section in their Saturday printing, primed for weekend open houses. Sending out a postcard to your neighbourhood or building can help as well. Internet advertising is another medium that is becoming more and more important every day. Social media, pay per click advertising and Craigslist advertising can all generate interest in your property. Having a solid marketing plan in place is of ultimate importance to generate maximum interest.

Step six: Prepare your property to show at its best. Hire a cleaner to get into the nooks and crannies of your property and make it shine. Consulting with a professional stager is always a good idea, whether or not you hire them to fully stage your property is one thing, but they will always be able to provide you with worthwhile advice. Hiring an accomplished photographer will make sure the property shows well in online photos which is an increasingly important part of creating demand.

Step seven: Now comes the open house. It’s show time! You’ll have to vacate the property so your agent can show it. Open houses will usually be during a two-hour time frame, but this isn’t set in stone. If your home has multiple levels you’ll want to make sure there is someone on every level to show people around. Your agent will be able to bring other agents from their office or unlicenced professionals to make sure every question in answered and your possessions are kept safe.

Step eight: After the open house, allow potential buyers a day or two to inspect the premises, in case they want to do that before making an offer. Like with the open house, it’s a good idea to keep this confined to a specific time period. Having five inspectors in, with five potential buyers, increases the amount of anxiety present between the buyers and increases the competitive atmosphere.If you are selling a strata unit, use this time to make sure all of the potential buyers have a chance to look at all of the strata documents. Removing all doubt that your property is a winner is critical during this time frame. Your agent should be calling all the interested parties to make it known that you are looking for an offer without conditions. And of course, you can always accept an offer with conditions if you feel the price and terms are in your favour.

Step nine: Now it’s time for offers! Your professional should specify a time to have the offers in hand or by email from all the interested parties. Now it’s time to go through them and see which one has the best terms for you and your family. It’s an exciting process, now it’s time to think about moving! Make sure your professional follows the steps outlined and your property will receive the most amount of offers possible.