Tips for Buyers and Sellers

Working with a real estate agent

An information guide produced by the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO)

Tips for Sellers

A quick list of suggestions to get your house ready to list!

Maximize your curb appeal: In Spring through Fall months keep your lawns/garden tidy. Place any trash/recycle bins inside your shed or garage and out of sight. Wash exterior doors, touch up paint on doors if needed, and tidy the thresholds. In the Winter months keep the driveway and walkway clear and safe.

Replace any cracked or brittle exterior vent covers such as dryer/HRV vent covers, and any ripped window screens.

Pressure wash exterior if mildew is visible on siding/eavestrough etc.

Stain your deck if needed and replace any rotting boards and tighten loose railings.

Deep clean window and patio door tracks and baseboards, as well as wipe down walls and light switches.

Neutral paint throughout main living areas/kitchen/baths; limit the number of wall colours Touch-up any damage/dings in the drywall.

Declutter living spaces and closets; less is more! Limit wall décor and keep kitchen counters and bathroom counters clutter free. Rent a storage unit if you lack space to store items you do not use regularly.

Tuck away bathroom items such as toilet brushes, plungers, trash cans, toothbrushes, robes and bath towels. Hang coordinating hand towels.

Clean inside kitchen appliances and inside bathroom cupboards and under the kitchen sink.

Shampoo carpets and stain remove spots if needed.

Ensure light fixtures are all operating and try to keep consistent temperature of lighting, for example soft white or bright white throughout without a mixing in one space.

Ensure smoke and CO alarms function and are not expired.

Clean your HRV and change your furnace filters.

Wash pet bedding and throw blankets and strive for an odour free environment (or lightly scented with room fragrance). We often can’t smell our own pet odours, but others will.

Home Sellers Guide

A resource to help you navigate through the home selling experience, from “listed” to “sold.”

Questions to ask when choosing your agent.

3 selling strategies for move-up buyers.

Contactless showing best practices.

and more!

Tips for Buyers

Whether coming to the area for a scheduled house hunting trip, you live locally or you are going to purchase from afar over live video tours, there are things you can do to prepare for success in purchasing your home or investment property.

Get your mortgage pre-approval up to date. This is the most important thing to do before you start your search for a property. This means providing personal information on your income, assets, debt marital status and employment to a qualified mortgage specialist, whether you are calling your bank or using a broker. These professionals are going to help ensure you are set up for success and know what your buying power is. Be honest, open and disclose everything they ask for so we can work together to ensure we stay within your means. Do not rely on web-based pre-approval forms, contact a professional. Discuss the lender’s comfort level with ‘no conditions’ in an Offer if this is a route you are considering, and what the repercussions are for you, as a Buyer. For example, will you need to increase your down payment if the house appraises less than what you have agreed to pay for it, and do you have the funds to bridge that delta?

Call me so we can discuss what your budget, needs and wants are. We will work together to share an understanding of your priorities (price, location, number of bedrooms/bathrooms, garage, yard etc.) so we can have a focused search and filter listings directly to your inbox that will check the boxes that matter most.

Get to know the neighbourhoods. We can chat about the local areas and what different towns and neighbourhoods have to offer that may be a good fit for you. Take a look at the areas around homes you like by going to “street view” on Apple or Google maps for example. It’s a great way to see what’s surrounding a home. If you see structures that you’re unsure about or have you questions, I’m here to get the answers.

Stay optimistic; in a Seller’s market, we may face competition from other Buyers, and it may take a few Offers before we get ‘the one’.

If you live outside the Ottawa Valley and see a home that meets your criteria, but you can’t get here to see it in person right away, call me for a live video walk through. We can walk through together on video to do a preliminary look and see things we can’t necessarily see through the web. If you have friends or family in the area, I’ll gladly coordinate with them as well so they can be your second set of eyes on the property if you like.

Review comparable recent sales with me before we make an Offer. What the Seller paid for the house or what MPAC has assessed the house at, are not generally relevant factors to what that house is worth today. What will help us determine a suitable Offer, is what have other comparable homes have sold for in recent months. The market is always changing, and I’m here to help you make informed decisions.

If you have standard conditions such as obtaining a Financial Approval and/or Home/Property Inspections, time is of the essence. We want to ensure your lender has the Purchase Agreement as soon as it’s accepted so they can work on your approval, and we want to schedule the inspection as soon as possible to allow time for you to receive a comprehensive written report and follow up on anything unexpected.

Plan your move dates to coordinate with your desired schedule. Keep in mind that “completion date” or “closing day” is the day you will get the title to the property and keys to the house. Sometimes the purchase does not ‘close’ until late afternoon, so you should always schedule your moving company/delivery of furniture and effects to occur the day after this date.

Home Buyers Guide

A resource to help guide you through the home-buying experience, from start to finish.

10 steps to purchasing a home.

How to find the right agent for you.

Homebuyer’s glossary.

and more!

Whether you are looking to list, planning to purchase, or you are not sure where to begin, I am here to help.

Wendy Reeves, BComm


If you are planning to upsize, downsize, invest or relocate, let’s discuss your real estate goals today. 

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