Choosing your REALTOR ®

The most important decision you will make in the sale of your home is the REALTOR you choose. Be sure to find someone you feel comfortable with. If you don't feel you can ask questions or go to your REALTOR, you have the wrong person. Your REALTOR should show you research to back up any recommendations. This includes information about recent sales, current listings, and recently expired listings in your neighborhood.

Choose a local REALTOR. He or she will know your area better than an outsider, will be seen as a source for people looking to relocate in your neighborhood, and will get better co-operation from other agents. It is likely that any amount you might save by having a friend or relative from outside the area serve as your REALTOR will be lost in their lack of knowledge about your specific local market.

Dont forget to ask for references from the REALTOR. He or she should be willing to give you names of previous clients. Ask your friends and acquaintances for recommendations, but make your final choice based on your needs. Ask the REALTOR to show you what will be done to market your home. Consider the office and company support available to him or her as well as the initiative and professionalism shown by the individual.

Look for a REALTOR who tells you what he or she knows from experience in the market, and not what they think you want to hear. Flattery may sometimes get the listing, but it doesn't sell the home!

Make a Good First Impression

In today's age of consumerism, every buyer is comparative shopping. Make a small investment in time, money and effort to give your home a solid advantage over competing properties.

Pay attention to detail now because first impressions count with buyers. You only have one chance and it starts with what often referred to as "curb appeal". Some tips to create a better curb appeal are:

Create A Buying Mood.

  1. Turn on lights.
  2. Turn on air conditioner/heater.
  3. Open the drapes.
  4. Light the fireplace.

Exterior Appearance

  1. Keep lawns cut.
  2. Trim hedges and shrubs.
  3. Weed and edge gardens.
  4. Clear driveway and clean up oil spills.
  5. Clean out garage.
  6. Touch up paint.
  7. Make repairs where needed Create Space.
  8. Clear halls and stairs of clutter.
  9. Store surplus furniture.
  10. Clear kitchen counter and stovetop.
  11. Clear closets of unnecessary clothing.
  12. Remove empty boxes and containers.


  1. Repair leaking taps and toilets.
  2. Clean furnace and filters.
  3. Tighten doorknobs and latches.
  4. Repair cracked plaster.
  5. Touch up paint.
  6. Clean and repair windows.
  7. Repair seals around tubs and basins.
  8. Replace defective light bulbs.
  9. Oil squeaking doors.
  10. Repair squeaking floorboards.

Squeaky Clean

  1. Clean and freshen bathrooms.
  2. Clean fridge and stove (in and out).
  3. Clean around heating vents.
  4. Clean washer and dryer.
  5. Clean carpets, drapes and window blinds.

At The Front Door

  1. Clean porch and foyer.
  2. Ensure doorbell works.
  3. Repair screen on door.
  4. Fresh paint or varnish front door.
  5. Repair door locks and key access

Moving Checklist

  1. Send change of address to: Post Office, Charge Accounts, and Credit Card Accounts, Friends & Relatives, and Subscriptions. Remember that your notice requires several weeks for magazines.
  2. Notify your bank. Transfer funds, arrange check cashing in new city.
  3. Insurance: Notify new location for insurance coverage (life, health, fire, auto, homeowner's.)
  4. Automobile: Transfer car title, car registration, car tags, driver's license, state windshield sticker, and motor club membership.
  5. Utilities: Gas, light, cable TV, water, telephone get refund of any deposits made. Arrange for immediate service in new town. Arrange final reading and change of name for billing.
  6. Delivery People: Cancel laundry, newspaper and milk.
  7. School: Ask for copies or transfer of children's records. Ask For:Medical records of family and pets.
  8. Drug and Eye Contact or Glasses Prescriptions to be transferred. Doctor and Pharmacist recommendations.
  9. Letters of Introduction to transfer memberships.
  10. Pet requirements in new city.
  11. Empty freezer; plan use of foods. Defrost freezer-refrigerator. (Place charcoal to dispel odors.)
  12. Have appliances serviced for moving.
  13. Clean rugs or clothing, before moving; have them "moving-wrapped."
  14. Check with your moving counselor: insurance coverage, packing and unpacking labor, arrival day, various shipping papers, method and time of expected payment.
  15. Plan for special care needs of infants.
  16. Plan garage sale.
  17. On your moving day: Carry currency, jewelry, documents yourself; or use registered mail.
  18. Plan for transporting pets. (They are poor traveling companions if unhappy.) Make sure you can be found if they become lost.
  19. Carry traveler's checks for quick available funds. Tell close friends or relatives your route and schedule (including overnight stops). Use them as "message headquarters."
  20. Double check closets, drawers, and shelves (to be sure they are empty).
  21. Arrange to leave keys with new tenant, owner or agent.

Benefits of Proper Pricing

When your home sells faster, you save carrying costs, mortgage payments and other ownership costs. A quicker sale creates less inconvenience for you. If you've moved before, you know the energy it takes to prepare for showings: keeping the home clean, making childcare arrangements, and altering your lifestyle. Proper pricing reduces these demands on you, by helping your home sell faster. At market value your home will gain exposure to more prospects that can afford the price.

Sellers who list at a high price are looking for that one buyer who will pay it, often not realizing that they have discouraged many potential buyers who could have afforded the home. The final sales price is probably one that will be affordable by more purchasers. This is because sellers many times accept a much lower price at a much later date since that one buyer willing to pay the higher price never comes.

When salespeople are excited about a home and its price, they make special efforts to contact all of their potential buyers. Knowing that it is priced properly for its market, they expect it to sell soon and encourage their prospects to act quickly. Their excitement is contagious!

Ad calls and sign calls to REALTORS turn into showings when price is not a deterrent. Most serious prospects are well educated about asking prices in the areas they are seeking. They will not waste their time on a home they consider overpriced.

Buyers fear they might lose out on a good home when it is priced right. They are less likely to make "low ball offers." Better pricing attracts multiple offers!

Bottom line, if a home is priced right, the excitement of the market produces higher sale prices. You net more both in terms of actual sale price and in less carrying costs.

Coastal Islands Real Estate

109 Wigmore Court, Savannah, GA 31410, Office: 912-658-7054, Fax: 912-897-7813, Cell: 912-658-7054