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October 2018 Newsletter

What we bring to you.

For this month, we would like to take our discussion away from the sometimes-tedious statistics that would normally occupy this space and spend a few minutes sharing about some of the best practices that we have found for successfully listing and selling homes…

Some of the motivation behind our content of choice for this newsletter stems from the mere fact that in a softening market, such as we have just entered, it is even more important to focus on the fundamentals in the quest for success.Years ago – before the market bust of 2007 – Jim and I began to find success in some of the simplest of practices.

Clean is paramount.

On some of our earliest customer appointments, Jim and I would arrive at a home that had been lived “hard,” and often little done to clean up after the hard living. Never afraid of dirt and grime, we put on our work clothes and stepped in. Cupboards, refrigerators, ovens, microwaves, and even toilets, not to mention floors – had to be clean. Hand scrubbing, gallons of bleach, and tired knees were what we invested and it paid off. The homes that we listed sold, and often sold quickly.

Preparation.

With meticulous cleaning, we were gaining success, but in time we grew bolder. We always knew that old faded paint, tired flooring, and – good gracious – those old and ugly countertops needed to go. Preparing the house to look its best is another great recipe for success

Presentation.

Jim does excellent photography and we used to rely heavily on his skill and capability – you should see some of his underwater photography from diving trips all over the world.
Alas, here too we made a huge discovery – the pro’s do it best. We have never looked back. Their only job is to make our homes look good, and they truly know how to do it. By now we have even begun to incorporate drone photography with amazing results.

Staging

A huge component of the Presentation, but so important that it bears its own title in this compendium. For the last several years we have been working with a fantastic staging company that brings so much to the homes that we list. Time and time again, we have found that staging brings the strongest offers in the quickest times. Earlier this year we listed a home where the sellers declined to stage it. We reluctantly listed the house without staging it. The house looked flat in the listing and the performance on the market over the first two weeks was just as flat. We finally convinced the sellers of the need to stage, took the house off the market, staged it, put it back on the market and received a full price offer within 5 days of re-listing.

Pricing

My-oh-my, I could write a book on this one, but I won’t. Pricing your home for sale is one of the most crucial components of successfully listing your home. In years gone by, the role of the real estate professional was that of providing the information to the client. Now we manage that information. With Zillow, Redfin, and many others putting values on properties, we have to bring it all together and show WHY the house should be priced as we’re suggesting.

Managing the listing

Once the home is on the market, we enter the role of active management.
How are the NWMLS stats on the listing doing? How are the showings going? What is the feedback from the showing agents? What can we do to respond to some of the negatives that we might be hearing in that feedback? If we’re on the market longer than expected, what is the strategy change necessary? How are the sellers doing? How well are we keeping them informed? What market changes have taken place since listing? All of this is critical, and necessary.
And we love it.

The practice of real estate is a dynamic profession that requires that we continue to learn and grow with it. Not only do we have the opportunity to learn from our own experiences, but we also work for one of the best brokerages in the business – Windermere Real Estate – and they provide some of the best classroom and practical training in the industry.

You the customer

We have been privileged to work for the best clients in the world – whether they be buying or selling, whether it be a condo priced at $225,000 or a home on Meydenbauer Bay priced at $2.3 million, we serve as though they are our only clients. You are the reason that we continue to serve – you are the best.
This is what we bring to you, and we enjoy our profession very much. Thank you for your patronage.