List Your Home
Selling your home is a big decision, one you should never take lightly. Choosing the right Realtor to help you sell it is also a big decision. It can be the difference between selling your home quickly and for the right price, or having it linger on the market for many months, or even longer. This is true in the big cities and densely populated areas, but I think it's even more important in our rural market. We seldom have buyers coming to look in a specific neighborhood, the way they do in the city. We often show property in multiple counties and states. A majority of our buyers are from out of the area. Because of this, you really want to choose a Realtor who specializes in the area where your house is located, is familiar with the other homes and neighborhoods in the county you are in, and is a member of the primary MLS that covers your area. This is important to understanding the values of the homes and to pricing your home to sell. Of course, we all want to get the highest price possible but overpricing a home doesn’t sell it and underpricing, though good for a quick sale, doesn’t do you any favors.
It's important to find someone with whom you are comfortable and can be honest with, someone who is honest back, not just telling you what you want to hear. You want to be careful that the Realtor you are interviewing is really listening to you, willing to take the time to explain things, answer questions and address your concerns… not just someone who talks a good game! You are going to need to be able to communicate well with your Realtor, you want someone who does this full time but is not too busy with too many listings to be there when you want to discuss things. Someone who answers your phone calls and emails in a timely manner and keeps you informed with what’s going on. I personally prefer that it comes from the Realtor, not their assistant or team member.
Finally, because so many of the buyers are from out of town, you really need great on-line marketing. There are a lot of properties for sale in many different areas in the Western NC and North GA mountains, how can you make yours stand out? In my opinion, great photography is number one. Maybe it’s because I’m a photographer, but you need those photos to grab a buyer’s attention and keep it. The photos need to show the property in it’s best light while accurately representing the property for sale. A rounded marketing approach is also important. You don’t want someone who just “throws your listing up on the MLS” and waits for showings.
So how do I achieve these things? I specialize in Clay County, NC and Towns County, GA. That includes Hayesville, Warne and Brasstown in NC, Hiawassee and Young Harris in GA. These are the areas that surround Lake Chatuge. I will go a little further showing property but only in very special circumstances to list it. I look at a listing as a group effort. I am working WITH you to sell your house. Communication is critical and I will tell you right up front that I am brutally honest about things. If my CMA puts the value of your property at $300,000 and you insist on walking with $400,000, I won’t list it. There are plenty of Realtors who will, with hopes of getting you to lower the price eventually, but I consider it to be a waste of both of our time. That being said, I don’t assume I am always correct, I will certainly listen and reevaluate the data if warranted.
My marketing strategy is heavily based on photography. I received my B.A. from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, CA, then worked in San Diego, CA for 18 years as a commercial photographer. I have been a Realtor here since 2009, when I started out, I did photography and virtual tours for other Realtors as well as for myself. I don’t have the time for that anymore, I need to focus on my own listings.
When I list a home, I often make more than one trip for the initial photos. It depends on the time of day required, often it’s morning for one side of the house, afternoon for the other. I use a Nikon DSLR camera with an auxiliary flash to get the best lighting inside while balancing with the outdoor light. It’s important to see what is beyond the windows to get the true feeling of the house… especially when the views are great! I do not use an ultra-wide-angle lens. It’s my opinion, and the opinion of just about every buyer I’ve discussed with, that those lenses are deceptive, making the rooms appear much larger than they are. I shoot very large files, it’s called shooting in Raw, allowing me to then edit the photos in Photoshop, lightening the shadows and darkening the highlights, as needed to mimic what your eyes see. I also straighten the lines out, I can’t stand when a room is leaning, or the perspective is skewed. The other advantage to having a photographer as your listing agent, is that I regularly go back to update the photos as the seasons change. This often makes for nicer photos and keeps the listing fresh.
I then use those photos for the listing, build a high definition virtual tour, and a webpage for your home. The listings go on both of the MLS’s in our area. The Northeast GA Board is the primary MLS for Clay County, NC and Towns County, GA Realtors, but I am also a member of the Mountain Lakes Board in Murphy, NC. It’s a smaller board servicing 3 NC Counties, but has information sharing with the Carolina Smokies Board in Franklin, NC. I advertise in the Georgia/North Carolina Mountains & Lakes Regional Guide, a magazine that advertises properties in our area and has a wide distribution and on-line presence. There are 7 issues per year and I always do a full-page ad.
So if you are ready to sell your home, please give me a call and let's see what I can do for you!