3 Tips for Selling Your Townhouse

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As any quick glance at recent news will prove, we’re living in a time of great change. That doesn’t seem to extend to housing affordability, though, as prices just keep rising in the Toronto real estate market.

The latest data from the Toronto Real Estate Board shows The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark was up by 19.7% on a year-over-year basis in October 2016. This means the average selling price for all home types was $762,975 – a 21.1% jump over the same time period. Addressing the growth, Toronto Real Estate Board’s Director of Market Analysis Jason Mercer stated that the skewed supply/demand ratio in the GTA means upward pressure on house prices will continue for the foreseeable future.

“New listings were up slightly in October compared to last year, but not nearly enough to offset the strong sales growth. Until we experience sustained relief in the supply of listings, the potential for strong annual rates of price growth will persist, especially in the low-rise market segments,” he said.

Townhouse Demand is Growing

Clearly we are in a seller’s market, especially those selling freehold properties, which now fetch an average price over $1.2 million. It’s no surprise many buyers are turning to townhouses as an alternative; they generally are more affordable, while offering more privacy than a condo.

While there’s plenty of buyer competition out there, those selling their townhouses still need to have their ducks in a row when marketing their listings to get the most value from their properties. Emma Pace, a real estate agent with Zoocasa Realty, outlines how she approaches selling your townhouse.

“I think regardless of the location or type of home, sellers and listing agents need to focus on three main items: Presentation, promotion and price. A harmony between all three will help to provide the best results,” she says.

Related Read: Are Toronto Townhouses a Good Investment?

Meet Somewhere in the Middle

Townhomes are somewhat unique in that they can provide a happy medium for many buyers that can’t afford a house but consider a condo too small. But what is the best way to position them to a buyer?

“There are typically two strategies used to market townhomes,” says Pace. “The first is modern, which is holding back offers and delegating one particular date for buyers to present and offer. The second is traditional ­– listing a property at the price you are anticipating and accepting offers any time.

Pace adds that it’s important to pay close attention to detail when listing.

“The goal when positioning a home for sale is to get maximum exposure in the market place; therefore you want to list in a fashion that buyers will expect to match their needs and expectations. Factors such as location, recent market activity, current market availability and the way that they have positioned their listing will play a part,” he says.

The Challenges of Marketing a Townhouse

One challenge when marketing a townhouse, whether it condo-town or a freehold-town, is the fact that often the exterior of these properties is interchangeable. This means the interior of the property is all the more important, which is something a sales agent will certainly have to highlight when creating the listing. This may mean shelling out a little bit extra in order to differentiate the property from the rest.

“It is important to ensure you are showcasing the interior of the property to the best of your ability,” says Pace. “Sellers in these types of properties are essentially on an even playing field regarding the exterior of the home, unless of course you’ve got some outdoor space to spruce up and highlight. You’ve got to make sure you are utilizing an excellent stager and photographer to showcase your property in its best possible form.”

About Daibhead O’Ceallacháin

Daibhead O’Ceallacháin is a freelance writer from Ireland that moved to Toronto in 2010. Writing for his local newspaper, he covered real estate during Ireland’s “Celtic Tiger” era and the subsequent housing crash and financial crisis. Today he writes about real estate, finance and politics in Canada, the U.S., Ireland and England.

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