WHY USE MY SERVICES AS YOUR REALTOR® IN SELLING YOUR CORTES ISLAND PROPERTY?

As a trained professional I am familiar with real estate law, procedures involved in buying and selling real estate in BC and I am available to do the work needed to insure your property is sold at the best price with the least amount of hassle for you. I can provide the information needed to help you arrive at a fair list price for your home. I can deal with all the work involved with marketing your home from making suggestions on how to make your home and property more appealing to buyers to placing the information on the Multiple List Service, putting up the sign, advertising locally, finding buyers and showing the property to pre qualified buyers. Buyers usually meet with me at my home office before we go look at properties. I will determine what price range they are able buy in and insure they are serious buyers before showing your home. As a long time island resident I am able to answer buyer questions about your neighbourhood as well as the island community.

I am familiar with real estate and contract law so will insure the contract of purchase and sale is drawn up in a professional manner and that all parties get fair representation. I can advise you of your rights, options and obligations when selling your property. I often tell clients selling your property can be an emotional roller coaster ride. I am on the same ride, I just don't go as high or as low. I am there to support and help you on the ride. You can be reassured to know that I am there to guide you through the process, answer your questions and give you moral support when needed.

Here are a few things sellers should be aware of when considering selling their Cortes Island property

THE IMPORTANCE OF PRICING YOUR PROPERTY RIGHT THE FIRST TIME

The single most important decision you will make in selling your Cortes Island property is determining the right asking price for the property.

IF YOU PRICE YOUR PROPERTY AT CURRENT MARKET VALUE:

- Your property should sell faster as it is exposed to more qualified buyers in your properties price range.

- Your home doesn't lose its "marketability" or go stale waiting to sell. In small communities like Cortes Island it does not take long for rumours to get around as to just why a property has not sold. Many times these rumours are not true however it is easy to turn a buyer off of looking at a property. Most buyers make a point of talking to islanders to get the low down on the market and the community.

- The closer to market value, the better the offers. Buyers generally do their homework and can see good value. An experienced buyer will act quickly and make a good offer knowing if they wait too long or offer too little someone else will buy the property before they have a chance.

- A well-priced property can generate competing offers. There is an interesting thing that happens when a lot of interest is generated in a property. Energy seems to build up around the property which attracts more interested buyers who are worried they will miss out on buying the property.

THE DANGERS OF PRICING TOO HIGH

Many sellers believe that if they price their home or property high initially, they can lower it later or they feel they are in no hurry and can wait for the market to catch up to them or for the 'right' buyer to come along. Often, when a home or property is priced too high, it experiences little activity because qualified buyers will not look in that price range and those qualified for that price range feel the value is not there. In order to sell the price eventually will have come down to market value, but by that time it's been for sale too long and some buyers will be wary and reject the property or worse yet qualified buyers will not have considered the property. On occasion, the price is dropped below the market value just to sell it and the property sells for less than it's worth.

WHAT IS THE CURRENT MARKET THE VALUE OF YOUR HOME?

The market ultimately determines the true value of your property. The market is determined by what buyers are ready, willing and able to pay for a property. Before you compare your home to similar properties and establish a competitive list price, the following points should be considered

HOW DOES A COMPARATIVE MARKET ANALYSIS HELP?

A comparative market analysis is an indicator of what today's buyers are willing to pay for a home or property on Cortes Island at the time the analysis is done. It compares the market activity of homes similar to yours in your neighbourhood and elsewhere on Cortes Island. Those that have recently sold represent what buyers are ready, willing and able to pay. The homes currently listed for sale represent the price sellers hope to obtain and will be your competition.

Those listings that have expired or been on the market a very long time are generally overpriced, hard to finance, poorly marketed or there is a major defect in the home or property that buyers are not willing to deal with. It should be noted that sometimes the 'major' defect is not that hard to deal with and smart buyers are well advised to do some research on the problem before discounting considering the purchase. A smart seller will also do some research into the problem and offer some possible solutions including price quotes if professional assistance is needed to correct the problem.

ONCE YOU HAVE DECIDED TO LIST YOUR HOME THERE ARE SOME THINGS YOU CAN DO TO MAKE THE HOME AND PROPERTY MORE APPEALING AND BRING YOU A BETTER RETURN

Preparing to Show Your Home

First impressions are the most important when showing a property to your advantage. Buyers that are turned off be something they see when first visiting the property tend to get hung up on that and don't always appreciate the full value. Here are some things simple you can do to make your home and property show at its best when potential buyers come to view.

Exterior

- House should generally be in good repair and look good
- Gates and entry ways should be in good repair and latches all work
- Roof, eaves troughs, down spouts and soffits should be in good repair
- Garage/car port should be clean and tidy
- Litter should be picked up and a general yard clean should be done.
- Old vehicles and equipment should be hauled away
- Cracked or broken window panes should be replaced
- Lawns and hedges should be cut and trimmed, garden weeded
- All stairs in should be in good repair - Door hardware should be in good repair
- Main entry porch and foyer should be clean and tidy

Interior

- Clean! Do a deep clean of the home and yard before buyers come to view (start this cleaning the day you list the property as it will take longer than you expect)
- Chipped plaster and paint should be touched-up
- Doors and cupboards should all be properly closed
- Leaky taps and toilets should be repaired
- Burned out light bulbs should all be replaced and lights turned on
- Squeaky doors should be oiled
- Mirrors, fixtures, and taps should be cleaned and polished
- Seals around tubs and basins should be in good repair
- The floors should be clean and garbage containers empty
- Inside of closets and cupboards should be neat and tidy
- Appliances should all be cleaned
- Countertops should be neat and clean
- Fresh air in the home makes it more appealing as does a fire in the wood stove or fireplace depending on the time of year
- Halls and stairs should be cleaned and clear of clutter
- Drapes should opened during daylight
- Carpets should be freshly vacuumed
- If possible put out fresh flowers
- Do not leave personal effects and valuables out.
- Store all clutter in plastic tote boxes, this makes last minute clean up easy especially if there is an unexpected showing on short notice. If there are kids in the family give them their own tote and encourage them to put their toys away before a showing.
- Pets should be absent, where possible, or contained during the showing and cat litter boxes should be clean

SHOWING ETIQUETTE

If you live in the home an appointment will be made to view the home. 24 hours notice is normal however if a buyer is on the island for only one day and it is determined the buyer is qualified to purchase your home and shows a serious interest you may be asked if it can be shown on short notice. If the home is vacant it should always be left clean and set up for a showing. The easier it is to show the home the better the likelihood of selling it. Buyers often like to view a home more than once. Showings can be as quick as half an hour or as long as two hours. Usually the longer the showing the more interest the buyer has in the home. If a buyer shows a serious interest in a home I often pack a picnic lunch and encourage the buyer to sit in the home or on the property and enjoy their time there. If you return home only to find the buyers are still in the home or on the property viewing this is a good sign. Give them space and time to take it all in.

Most home owners prefer to be absent during a showing. This makes it more comfortable for the buyers as well. If serious interest is shown in the property you can always meet the buyers during another visit. Most Cortes Island buyers appreciate meeting the home owner and have questions about the property and home that I cannot answer. If this is comfortable for you another visit can be set up after the buyers have first viewed the property. As your agent I can be in attendance for this visit. You are under no obligation to meet with the buyers and questions can be relayed through me and the other REALTOR® who is representing the buyer.

It is not unusual for Cortes Island sellers to leave out some cookies or treats for the showing. This makes the buyers feel at home and creates a comfortable environment. Good smells in the home make it more appealing and what smells better than fresh baked cookies or bread?

Information provided by Frances Guthrie

DISCOVERY ISLANDS REALTY LTD

Home office on Cortes Island phone/fax 250-935-6716

Frances Guthrie

office: 250-935-6716

email: frances@cortesislandrealestate.com

Frances Guthrie