Getting Inside the Mind of Home Buyers

November 3, 2013 | Marketing and Selling Your Home

In order to successfully sell your Toronto or GTA home, it’s important to understand what buyers are expecting when they look at your property. By getting inside the mind of potential buyers, you can view your own property with a different point of view and make sure to give them what they want.

To get you started, here are a few big picture ideas buyers have in mind when searching for their new home.


According to a recent Bank of Montreal (BMO) survey, a safe neighbourhood is the most important factor when looking at a home’s location.  If your home is in a safe and desirable area, highlight those details in the listing. If your district isn’t ideal, look at ways to improve your property with safety in mind. Better outdoor lighting, a solid front door and a fence around your property can help buyers feel they will be safe in their new home.


We’ve all heard it before… location, location, location. BMO’s Home Buying Report also found potential home buyers are placing high importance on a short commute to work, a quiet street, good neighbours and being close to family and friends. Emphasizing your home’s positive points, such as being close to public transit, shopping and other amenities can help get more buyers through the door.


In order to sell quickly, buyers need to feel like they are getting good value for their money. They are looking for a home that has a high perceived value based on the current market. Buyers also hope to find a property that offers them more features than comparable houses. By showing your home in its best possible state, you are indicating to buyers they are getting more bang for their buck.

Move-in Ready

A survey by the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) reported that home buyers prefer a house that is move-in ready over one that requires even only minor repairs. Fixer-uppers were even less desirable to most buyers. When seeing the repairs or maintenance need to be done, buyers see it as increasing the cost of the purchase price, making it less attractive than other properties in the same price range. Spending the necessary money to complete repairs and staging your home can equal bigger returns for sellers in the end.

Curb Appeal

A home that looks well maintained and landscaped shows buyers it has been well taken care of. Before putting it on the market, take a look at your home’s curb appeal. Does it look inviting? Are the shrubs and flower beds attractive? Sometimes all it takes is a little paint or updating fixtures such as lights or the mailbox to make your home look polished and ready to sell. Don’t forget the backyard when looking at your home’s outdoor appeal. Barbara Sukkau, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA), also speaks of its importance in a press release.  “An attractive and functional backyard is like adding another room to your property”.  Ensuring your yard is appealing can help buyers picture themselves enjoying the space and making it their own.

Looking at your home through the buyer’s eyes is an important exercise. By highlighting your home’s good points, as well as improving its value, you can sell more quickly for the highest price the market will allow.

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