So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and sell your home. Congratulations, your timing couldn’t be better. The Greater Toronto Area (and much of the country, for that matter) is currently experiencing strong seller’s market conditions. Inventory of homes for sale is at record lows and demand is high. You’ve got the upper hand, but even so, overconfidence can kill you and one wrong move can be detrimental to your sale. Here are four golden rules for selling – and winning – in a seller’s market.

1. Think like a buyer. Who’s buying the type of home you’re selling, in your particular neighbourhood? What features are they looking for? And what price are they willing to pay? Here’s where it helps to engage an experienced real estate professional who knows your local market. They’ve done their demographic research of the areas they serve, and in broad terms, they likely already have a good idea of who your buyer will be. Stage your property to appeal to their preferences.

2. Now, think like a marketer. While I mentioned marketing in very brief terms above, this is actually a huge part of every successful sales strategy. Remember, you’re not just trying to sell your house. You’re trying to sell it to the right buyer, who will offer the right price and under the right conditions – which, ideally, is no conditions! Even in a seller’s market , just listing a home on MLS and keeping your fingers crossed is not enough. Speak with your realtor about the best ways to reach your target buyer. These days, that could mean anything from traditional marketing and open houses to social media and 3D virtual tours.

3. Staging is critical. Even in a seller’s market, ensure you’re making a good impression. Did you know that staging your home can increase the final selling price up to $50,000-$100,000? You can do it yourself or hire a professional home stager, but all things considered, this is a relatively low investment that makes a big difference to your bottom line.

4. Timing is everything. While the Greater Toronto Area will likely continue to be a seller’s market for the foreseeable future, as it has been for the better part of two decades, don’t miss your window of opportunity. Conditions can change quickly. Real estate markets are sensitive to fluctuations in the local end greater economies, employment, immigration and even the weather.

Generally people decide to sell their home due to a lifestyle change – a new job, a growing family, an empty nest, retirement, or a bevy of other milestones that change your needs for your space. Regardless of what’s happening in the market, life happens. When the conditions are ripe (and right) right to make your move, don’t delay. If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected.

Interestingly, 2020 has also shown us the resilience of Toronto’s and Canada’s housing markets. Generally speaking, real estate has continued to be a profitable investment, and that’s something that’s not likely to change any time soon.