1.         Wanting everything done, done, done: Everyone has their idea of a dream home, but many great homes can be made into a dream. Walk before you run. Dreams don’t always happen overnight.

2.         Not being able or willing to see the potential with small fixes: With the help of a contractor, relatively small renovations can yield huge results. By opening up a wall here or there, the new place may not be recognizable. Paint is just décor.

3.         Wanting an unrealistic deal or wanting to win:  You want to consider win-win, not win-lose.  Give the other side a win, it may just help you win the home for yourself or get your place sold and limit  stress. Offering full list price on Day 1 with a short close, just might avoid competition and seal the deal.

4.         Not listening to advice on the return on investment value of painting, maintenance items, de-cluttering, editing furniture, and staging:  “I don’t like neutrals or that’s not my favourite colour.”  You are painting or staging, not for yourself, but for what most buyers are looking for. Less is more- more money. $100 of paint in a can is worth $1,000 on the wall.

5.         Taking a long time to make a decision. (Dithering):  You won’t always have the privilege of time. It might be the first day on market and you are the 10th person to view the home, or mid-December with many days on market. Don’t delay. Avoid disappointment. Others are looking, too.

6.         Convincing yourself the street traffic is worse than it really is:  Try to be objective and set aside your preconceived notions.

7.         Not knowing the difference between wants and needs:  In all likelihood, you WILL have to compromise on something. Better it be a nice-to-have item  than a must-have. You may not get it all in this house.

8.         Ignoring price of comparable homes that have sold in your proximity, because you are fixated on a desired number: Sometimes a month or two can reset prices in a neighbourhood, especially in a new year or when comparable homes have sold at higher prices. It may be the new normal.

9.         Not willing to participate in a multiple bid situation: In our market, multiple bids have been a fact of life for a decade or more. Not every home, but a great many.  Maybe in another decade that won’t be the case, but can you afford to wait?  Pick a price you are comfortable paying, ignore the others and get into the game. Not all multiple offers are great, or even good, offers.

10.       Not being prepared: to make a decision, financially, or not having all of your “ducks” in a row:  Decide what you need to get done and do it. Mortgage pre-approval, family buy-in, or readiness to move from urban to suburban. Whatever it is, do your homework. No one can do it for you.

– Chip Barkel, MCNE, SRES, Toronto Real Estate. Extraordinary Service. Top Results.