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Calgary home sellers go it alone in a hot market — with a little help from a local company

Click to play video: 'Calgary home sellers venture out on their own despite hot housing market'
Calgary home sellers venture out on their own despite hot housing market
WATCH: Some Calgary home sellers are deciding to go it alone despite a crazy housing market. As Tomasia DaSilva reports, they do have some help navigating any challenges, thanks to a local company – Feb 18, 2021

Some Calgary home sellers and buyers are navigating an increasingly red hot housing market on their own — with a little help from an Alberta company.

Tim and Darlene Kitchen recently sold their home in the community of Sunnyside, but they didn’t use the traditional route. Instead, they followed the recommendation of a friend.

“We just jumped on it,” Darlene said. “We thought this is such an innovative way to do our real estate transaction.”

Read more: Calgary’s housing market stages remarkable rebound: ‘It’s like a scene out of Mad Max’

The couple was told to check out online real estate marketplace Bōde Canada. Launched in late 2019 in Calgary and Edmonton, it helps sellers list their property for free and then markets it. The seller and buyer can then connect and carry out their own transaction.

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“We’d get a text or we’d get an email indicating that there was an offer,” Tim said.

“It was actually quite straightforward. When you’re talking with a prospective client, it just cuts out the noise a little bit.”

It took the couple about four months to sell their home, but they said they didn’t regret going this route.

“Given the fact that it was in our hands and we weren’t in a hurry, we were just able to kind of ride it out and get what we wanted,” Darlene added.

Calgary home for sale using online real estate marketplace. Global Calgary

They said showings were also a breeze.

“It was a pleasure actually because you get to show your home,” they said. “We know the community and every neighbour on the street. And we know this house better than a realtor is going to know it.”

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Click to play video: 'Calgary’s red hot housing market leaves sellers scrambling – in a good way'
Calgary’s red hot housing market leaves sellers scrambling – in a good way

Robert Price, founder and CEO of Bōde, told Global News the marketplace has taken off since it first launched — even during COVID-19.

“Our growth was going in the right direction and we actually accelerated during the pandemic.”

He believes that was due to the lack of face-to-face meetings required compared to a traditional real estate transaction.

He also said while Bōde may not be a fit for everyone, there is a place for it in the market.

“We have found, though, that there’s a significant portion of the population that we’re dealing with that are really excited about controlling the process, feeling empowered and ultimately saving money.”

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Calgary home for sale using online real estate marketplace. Global Calgary

Bōde takes a one per cent commission of the sale from sellers, but nothing from buyers. Realtors, representing buyers, are also not charged.

Price said it’s about more than money — it’s about convenience. He added if a client does need help, Bōde has a full team of experts to help navigate any concerns that may come up, along with up-to-date relevant market data.

“When a market is like this (in a frenzy), there’s a lot of confusion, there’s a lot of contradiction and lots of opinions out there,” he added. “So it’s actually even more important to have the critical data at your disposal.”

Click to play video: 'Calgary re-sale housing market compared to a ‘scene out of Mad Max’ amid COVID-19'
Calgary re-sale housing market compared to a ‘scene out of Mad Max’ amid COVID-19

The Kitchens ended up getting over the listed asking price for their Sunnyside home. They’re very pleased with experience and added they had very few — if any — challenges.

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The only challenge they face now, they said, is finding a new home — which they plan to do again using the online marketplace.

Bōde has plans to expand to other parts of Canada.

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