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07/25 - Selling

Marketing Strategies for Sellers in a Changing Market

marketing strategies for sellers in a changing market

The elusive FOMO mentality is taking a short stay-cation

Admittedly, it ain’t super thrilling to be a Seller in today’s shifting market. The energy, the urgency, and the elusive FOMO mentality are taking a short stay-cation, if you will.

And that’s okay. You just need to be prepared for a snoozier selling process.

Less showing activity. A longer time on the market. But a fair and reasonable sold price is on the horizon. If your expectations are tempered and you have a thoughtful marketing strategy, it will be much easier to cross the finish line.

Based on our experience, we have outlined SIX marketing strategies to help Sellers win in today’s changing market. Are you ready?

1/ A Polished Pricing Strategy

In this market, you must be competent (& realistic) about your ‘Listing Price’ and expected ‘Sold Price.’

In fact, these two numbers shouldn’t be drastically different.

Over the last decade, it has been commonplace for Sellers to list their properties lower than market value and host an offer date in hopes of eliciting a bidding war. Due to low inventory, low-interest rates and buyer fanaticism, this strategy worked. And properties would continually sell for record-breaking prices month over month.

However, in today’s changing landscape, we recommend that Sellers take a different approach.

The Seller and their listing agent must spend considerable time determining market value based on today’s comparable sales. The value should be determined by reviewing the sale prices over the last 4-8 weeks, not what sold in the year’s first quarter.

Once a rock-solid value has been narrowed down (and backed up with accurate data), we recommend that Selling clients determine an acceptable range for their expected sale price. Once comfortable with sale price expectations, we advise Sellers to list the property slightly higher than the top end of their forecasted range. Why? This is not a time to play games with a dwindling buyer pool – we want to be transparent about price expectations from day one.

And by listing slightly higher than your expected range, you’re permitting room to negotiate down, which will undoubtedly happen in today’s market.

Finally, Sellers need to be open to accepting offers with conditions that haven’t been commonplace in Toronto for years. A flexible mindset regarding price, terms and conditions will help smooth out the process and help to ease your stress.

Patience and some old-fashioned grit will help see you through to the other side.

2/ The Importance of Staging & Design (more than ever before)

In a Seller’s market, it is typical to see discount agents posting “amateur hour” listings. We’re talking upside-down iPhone photos of properties showcasing poor lighting, clutter, toilet seats and un-made beds.

We cannot imagine why any Seller would list their property like that in the best of times – it appears to be an invitation to leave money on the table from our point of view.

So, doesn’t it make sense to showcase your property at its highest and best potential in a changing market?

If you agree, you’ll also concede that a full-service broker or team offering staging & design solutions are imperative.

Looking magazine worthy is ONE of the best strategies to make an emotional connection with prospective buyers and stand out from the rest of the crowd!

This isn’t a time to pull back; it’s a time to do things right:

  • Paint & Minor Repairs
  • De-Clutter, De-Clutter, De-Clutter
  • Store Extra Furniture & Boxes
  • Light Landscaping, Exterior Maintenance & Professional Cleaning
  • Partial or Full Home Staging, including Art, Decor & Florals

Did you know that studies show that a seller has 2.7 seconds to convince a buyer to view their property after seeing it online? So doesn’t it make sense that your property looks its very best on and off screen? It’s a no-brainer, really!

For some inspiration and ideas, dive into our recent article about the latest 2022 Design Trends.

strategies for selling your home in Toronto
marketing strategies for selling your home
marketing strategies for selling your home
strategies for selling your home in Toronto

3/ Professional Photography (+ Bonus Video & Floor Plans)

Can someone tell us why a Listing Agent doesn’t invest in the best? It blows our minds.

There is NOTHING more critical to your Listing package than your photographs. Hand’s down. Time and again. We don’t care what market we’re in – the images are what stop buyers and their agents in their tracks and get them moving into action.

Action produces showings. And showings produce offers.

When interviewing Selling agents, ask to see their listing portfolio and inquire about their photographer. Study photos. Find out which brokers invest in great photography. And the same applies to video and professional floor plans.

Trust that we have sold very average, cookie-cutter properties leveraging gorgeous photography and video alongside best-in-class staging & design. Take a look at our before and after images if you don’t believe us.

The creative elements of your listing are just as integral as price and offer strategy. Your home deserves the best of the best (now more than ever).

4/ A Digital Advertising Strategy

So, you’ve done everything right. Your expectations align with market realities. You’re comfortable with your pricing strategy & have committed to a lengthier sale process. Your property is impeccably staged, styled and photographed.

So what’s next? Your property to be seen. The more eyeballs, the better. Remember, you only need one buyer. So, let’s go fishing.

What’s the best way to reach a massive audience beyond Realtor.ca and House Sigma? Hands down, it’s targeted and paid social and digital advertising.

Find out how your listing agent maximizes digital tools and what percentage of their marketing budget is spent on social advertising. Ask to see samples of their former ads and inquire about their expertise, knowledge and results. You gotta pay to play when it comes to successful digital advertising campaigns.

At Fox Marin, we take our sponsored advertising very seriously and will ensure targeted ads are running across all social platforms. Coincidently, great listing photography and staging play a significant role in digital performance (it all adds up, my friends).

5/ Local Expertise & International Reach

In this business, relationships matter more than ever – especially when Selling in a market responding to micro & macro economic influences weekly.

Your listing agent’s network and local expertise impact your sale’s outcome. They should be tapped into your neighbourhood’s real-estate activity and have proven relationships with agents that work in the same neck of the woods.

It’s much easier to structure and negotiate a deal with an agent you know and trust than with your husband’s cousin, who has a real estate license (gosh, who doesn’t these days?).

Additionally, it’s always worrisome to us when agents market themselves as GTA experts – how is that even possible? Just think about it. How can you simultaneously be an expert in Mississauga, The Beaches and Yonge & St. Clair?

In addition to local connections and knowledge, your listing broker should have access to International buyers and advertise accordingly. We have sold many properties to families relocating to Toronto or parents with children attending a downtown university who need a place to live for school.

Your broker’s local and international reach should matter – optimizing the potential of finding the right buyer in today’s current conditions means leaning into all of the marketing tools a great broker can offer!

6/ Expert Brokers & A Supportive Team

Maybe we sound like a broken record, but your choice in Listing Broker will pay off. This isn’t the time to hire your best friend, uncle or niece to sell your property.

Now, more than ever, experience matters.

Seek out Brokers that have a wealth of knowledge, expertise and experience. Ask questions about their former listings, sales statistics, infrastructure and team.

It will be much easier to sell your property with a professional agent and team in today’s changing market. This is a given.

Look for Brokers that can effortlessly tackle the marketing strategies outlined above – ones that can go above and beyond and stretch themselves to come up with creative solutions to negotiate a win-win.

If you are interested in interviewing agents and need some ideas about what to expect, check out our recent article about the Seller’s Listing Presentation. You’ve got this!

To summarize, here are Cole’s Notes to our Top Six Marketing Strategies to Win in a Changing Seller’s Market:

  • A Polished Pricing Strategy
  • The Importance of Staging & Design (more than ever before)
  • Professional Photography (+ Bonus Video & Floor Plans)
  • A Digital Advertising Strategy
  • Local Expertise & International Reach
  • Expert Brokers & A Supportive Team

If you have any questions or additional comments, please direct messages our way to us anytime. We would love to hear from you and ensure you’re set up for success – we’re at our 5-Star best when you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Contact Us (We’re Nice).

Kori Marin is a Toronto Broker & Managing Partner at Fox Marin Associates. For high-energy real estate aficionado Kori Marin, a well-lived life is achieved by maintaining an “all-in” attitude that realizes every last ounce of one’s full potential. This mindset has driven successful results in every aspect of her life – from her corporate sales and account management experience to her international travels, to her years of fitness training and leadership – and is the hallmark of the exceptional work that she does on behalf of her clients in the residential real estate sector in downtown Toronto.