Let's talk about one of the most common misconceptions about how homes sell these days.
NOTE: this blog has been updated in spring 2022.
In the 1970s, food and a swimming pool would guarantee at least one thing. Someone was going to warn you about swimming after eating. In our minds, we would eat a tuna sandwich and some potato (pronounced pah-day-dah) chips and then simply plummet to the bottom of the deep end. Afterall, it was science. Right!?
Of course, after several decades, that aquatic myth slowly started to disappear and alas, snacks and pool time were allowed to happen within 30 minutes of each other.
Which brings us to the next myth worth busting.
Meet Mr. Arbuckle. He is looking to sell his home and is talking to his neighbour about what to do.
Arbuckle: “Well, it looks like we’re going to be selling our house this spring”
Neighbour: “You are, are ya?”
Arbuckle: “Yup. Time to simplify things. The yards getting a bit much”
Neighbour: “Sounds good”
Arbuckle: “From what I’m readin’, a lot of the big deals are from those Toronto buyers”
Neighbour: “They are, are they?”
Arbuckle: “Yup. We’re going to meet with a few Toronto realtors (pronounce real-a-ders).”
Neighbour: “Uh huh…”
Arbuckle: “Well, the way I see it, you want to reach those big Toronto buyers, you gotta get a Toronto agent”
Neighbour: “Makes sense to me”
Arbuckle: “The local agents are nice and all but how are they supposed to bring us that Toronto money?”
Neighbour: “I have no idea”
Arbuckle: “Me neither…”
Neighbour: “…well, I really should get goin…”
“The above is a fictional scenario with actors performing their roles.
Any representation of an actual conversation is purely coincidental”
Disclaimer aside, that conversation in 2022 is the equivalent of not swimming after lunch. And for several reasons. Let’s tackle some of the common points.
MYTH: Those Toronto buyers.
FACT: Change “Toronto buyers” to out-of-market buyers. The reality is, there has been a shuffling of the deck that saw people move in all directions. The shift was (and continues to be) from all directions, not only down the QEW from Toronto to Niagara.
MYTH: To get buyers from Toronto, you need a Toronto agent.
FACT: See Myth 1 re: Toronto vs out-of-market buyers. That being said, out-of-Market Buyers are already here in droves. In fact, recent data research shows that in December 2021 through spring 2022, for example, approximately 60% of all buyers were from out-of-market. That trend has been behind the explosive market we’ve experienced.
MYTH: You can’t reach the Toronto buyer like a Toronto agent can.
FACT: Ask yourself this. If you’re a Toronto buyer, where are you going to go to research real estate in Niagara? The internet. And the vast majority of real estate searches start on Realtor.ca where all MLS® listings, regardless of where the agent operates, will appear. Agent A from Toronto lists a home in north-end St.Catharines. It is uploaded to Realtor.ca. Agent B from St.Catharines lists a home in north-end St.Catharines. Same deal. From a basic flow of information, it’s important to know that the digital display of listings starts from a central location across the entire country, something that is fairly unique to Canada.
MYTH: Agents from different areas don’t see all the listings.
FACT: The days of real estate boards operating in separate silos are long gone. Access to information and mobility are the reality of the day so the idea of the gatekeeper holding the listing info for a specific area is no more. Remembering that buyers coming to Niagara are from all over southern Ontario, it is worth noting that thousands of Realtors have access to our listing on our MLS system at the click of a button.
There are more but you probably get the point.
So, let’s go back to Mr.Arbuckle and his situation.
Does she need an agent operating in a city 100km away because the potential buyer might live there?
Or does she need an agent who will market her home brilliantly?
An agent who will answer the phone and know the area backwards and upside down that will be able to speak to the benefits of life in the Arbuckle home?
An agent who knows the schools nearby.
Where are the best hiking trails and places to get outside?
What are the construction characteristics of homes on that side of the street?
Why is the Arbuckle home unique? What makes it special in the local marketplace?
The agent that can speak to things to do in the city? The buyer likes to listen to live classical music? Let’s connect you with the Performing Arts Centre!
The buyer wants hardwood in the bedrooms. Where should we go for new flooring? Or hiring someone to instal it?
We’d like to hire a landscaper.
The Realtor is the Front Desk Staff at the hotel.
When you step up to the desk, you hope they know the hotel, where to go for a coffee, what time the pool is open and what the views are from the different rooms and floors.
You hope they’re exceptional marketers, communicators and facilitators.
They answer calls and can chat comfortably whether the caller is a buyer from Whitby, Kitchener or Seattle.
Their value is not the postal code in which they live but rather their ability to be an ambassador for your home, the neighbourhood, the city and the lifestyle that your home or property offers.
...and it's possible that the GTA Realtor is all of the above. But as a seller, it's important you know that to be the case.
So, go eat that sandwich and cannon ball into the deep-end!
Want to discuss your home, how we market and the best pool-side snacks?
We’d love to hear from you.