A New Role

Recently I was nominated and elected as a Director of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board. We serve our near 4,000 members by meeting regularly, serving on committees, and trying to further our industry in a variety of ways. I ran on 3 platforms:

Positive Stories – There are so many great Realtors out there doing wonderful things to serve our communities. I’ve been telling those stories personally, but it’s time to tell them more broadly, with the power of ‘Organized Real Estate’ behind me. We need to combat the political and media assault by sharing what we really do, a few bad apples have been allowed to destroy our reputation and that can’t stand.

Technology/Advertising – Both areas were a shock to me when I entered real estate. The technology seemed disjointed at best, and the advertising regulations are embarrassingly out of date with the realities of contemporary culture.

Mental Health – In speaking with other professional organizations, it’s clear that we need to take some steps to bring this conversation out of the closet and to the fore. As Realtors, we handle extremely stressful situations in a 24/7 business environment. So many have come to me to share their challenges and we need to work out a way as an industry to care for our own.

Ultimately, I see this as another opportunity to learn and to grow as a professional. It should serve my past, present, and future clients. As always, if you’ve got any questions, either as a fellow Realtor or as a member of the public, don’t hesitate to reach out!

Lindsay’s Corner

In our last newsletter I talked about the importance of curb appeal when readying your home for sale. Making sure your garden and entry way are looking fabulous is key to giving potential buyers that “this feels like home” vibe before they even step foot in the door.

Despite Mother Nature giving us a run for our money this winter I do believe we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and we might even be able to get out into our yards sooner rather than later. I’m a huge fan of planting perennial bulbs so I don’t have to constantly re-imagine my garden every year and it will just keep getting better with time.

Unfortunately, I often miss the boat in the fall when I should be planting spring bulbs; I don’t know why but for some reason one minute it’s Labour Day and the next it’s Christmas and I’m looking at my yard that I never did get around to cleaning up properly wishing I had gotten some tulips and daffodils in the ground. Sigh. Friends, if you struggle with time management like yours truly there’s still hope! There are some fantastic summer flowering bulbs that can planted now (or whenever the ground decides to thaw). In fact, some of my very favourite summer flowers can be planted in the coming weeks like dahlias and lilies.

Don’t have a yard? No problem, these bulbs are awesome in containers too which means you can make custom planters to transform your entry way and patio/deck space. Our friends at Cedar Rim Nursery are having a sale on their summer flowering bulbs. Click HERE for their online flier. They know everything about everything so if you’re a beginner (like me) you can wander in and ask them all kinds of questions and they will listen VERY patiently and they will even answer…ha! Happy gardening.

What’s Love Got To Do With It?

One of the things that sets us apart at David Smith Homes Group is how seriously we take emotions in the home buying and selling process. One of the first questions we ask is, ‘how are you feeling about the process?’ We get responses all over the emotional spectrum from excited to terrified. This focus on the emotions is more than a gimmick, it really does have an impact on how we serve our clients. So, practically, how do those emotions influence the way we work together? Let’s take a look at some examples:

If you’re confused, then we take extra time to educate. We make sure you know exactly what you’re doing every step of the way. You’re made to feel you can ask any question, at any time, just as it should be.

If you’re excited, we’ll try to keep that excitement level up, without putting you in a compromising situation where it gets the better of you and you buy a home we know you’ll regret.

If you’re heartbroken, maybe selling a home you have incredible memories in, we’ll be sensitive to that, sometimes we’ve even ordered pictures of a home to be painted and printed nicely as a memento. Maybe instead of reading a cover letter about the next family to live there, you’d prefer not to know.

If you’re happy, then we’ll do everything we can to keep it that way! Ultimately that’s what we want.

If you’re overwhelmed, we’ll only ever go at your pace, as long as it doesn’t threaten to get in the way of your goals. We’ll remind you constantly that you’re the one in control.

If you fall in love, we’ll remind you that we might be being recorded during a showing, so let’s not shout from the rooftops how much we love the kitchen!

And if you couldn’t care less, i.e. not feeling anything, then we’ll try to wake you up because unless you’ve got hundreds of thousands of dollars to play with without any worries, then there’s an appropriate degree of emotion that should be at play!

Emotions really do play into a home buying and/or home selling process. If you’d like to talk to us about your real estate needs, don’t hesitate to reach out! We’ll take care of the practical and emotional considerations throughout the journey.

Lindsay’s Corner – Help Buyers Love Your Home

When it comes to selling your home you want potential buyers to fall in love. As much as we encourage Buyers to use their heads to make decisions (Does the location work? Is it big enough? Will it be functional for your family?) we all know that a HUGE part of what motivates people to write an offer is how they feel and what their hearts are telling them. When Buyers walk in and have that “this is it!” moment you’d better believe that a big part of it is because of the staging. A well laid out room with cozy touches makes it so much easier for Buyers to imagine themselves living there. Sellers, don’t underestimate the power of staging! I could go on and on but for now let’s focus on three main tips:

1) Curb Appeal

All of the cliches about first impressions are true. How your home looks from the outside is the first impression a Buyer gets when they pull up so make it a good one! It’s the dead of winter and all of a sudden the lower mainland has decided to look more like the prairies than the west coast so I get that your yard and outdoor space isn’t exactly picture perfect but you can still give it a spruce. If there’s snow on the ground make sure your driveway, sidewalk, and walk ways are all shovelled and clear. If you have a front yard/garden make sure all of the dead vegetation has been cut back and cleared away. Add a bit of colour to your entry way with a winter planter (there are actually LOTS of options and our friends at Cedar Rim Nursery are fountains of information on this topic…tell them we sent you!).

2) De-Clutter

Ok friends…I know the excitement of all of our New Year’s resolutions is kind of waring off and despite our best efforts we haven’t become Marie Kondo the second but honestly, this is a big one if you’re staging your house for sale. Get rid of all of the crap. I know it’s hard…I have two small children who undo all of my efforts as fast as they possibly can but you’ve just got to do it. Clear off counter tops, edit your closets, and convince yourself you don’t need four couches in your living room. Trust me. You don’t.

3). Return rooms to their original use

Look, I’m as big a fan of the “who needs a dining room when it can be an office” look as much as the next girl but Buyers are going to naturally respond better to staging that reflects the true use of the space. So, a dining room should be a dining room, a secondary sitting room should be a sitting room (not a play room, not a craft room, etc.). Again, I know it’s so much easier said than done but it really makes a difference.

If you’re feeling daunted by getting your house ready for new Buyers to fall in love with please don’t hesitate to reach out! I do staging consultations for our Sellers and I’m more than happy to come and help!

Lindsay’s Corner (Client Q&A)

1. What mattered most to you in choosing to work with David & Lindsay?

Honesty, integrity and genuine caring personalities.

2. Can you share a little about the results achieved working together?

Multiple offers and sold for list price!

3. How did your experience differ from past real estate transactions?

Haven’t had many experiences buying or selling but Lindsay and Davids marketing strategies were amazing!

4. How do you think David & Lindsay’s marketing techniques helped?

Lindsay and David gave excellent insight to our home and property via drone video and printed materials that were marketed on all social media outlets. They are extremely organized and their marketing skills are incredible and very impressive. We were simply blown away by the results!

5. How was ‘people over property, always’ reflected in the process of selling your home?

There was never any pressure put upon us at any time during this process. Lindsay and David were always concerned about our input and feelings with respect to our decisions. We had multiple offers so it was nice to have Lindsay and David guide us and help us along the way. They are truly honest, hardworking and extremely passionate about their roles. We highly recommend Lindsay and David for any real estate endeavours! Thank you Lindsay and David! You two are simply the best!