WORKING WITH A REALTOR
We at Rosskoka Team are often asked how to choose a realtor. Although many people have traditionally gone to friends, more are realizing that real estate is a significant asset and are beginning to take a business approach in making their realtor selection.
We would be asking the following important questions
Peter and Ross have worked together in this market since 2004, forming Rosskoka Team in 2005. They annually publish their market analysis and make it available to their clients. Interestingly, other realtors in their office now look to Rosskoka to provide them with market statistics for their own planning purposes. Throughout the season they provide quarterly updates on Lakes Muskoka, Joseph and Rosseau.
Many of their clients have choices. Buying a cottage is discretionary. Owners want to know they are making a wise investment. At some time they may choose to exit the market or move to another location. They trust Rosskoka’s analysis and judgment to assist them in making informed choices about what to buy, when to sell and at what level.
Today, the internet is the backbone of cottage marketing. More than 92% of real estate business comes from the ‘net. Rosskoka has the largest self-generated database of cottage prospects that they know of. There are more than 6000 names on their regularly updated list with more than 1200 active and categorized into price ranges. Their data base typically grows by 35 new names each week. They reach to their data base regularly and frequently with real estate news, new listings and value offerings. They keep their customer base informed.
Rosskoka recently invested several thousands of dollars to integrate their web presence so that facebook, their blog (rosskoka.blogspot.ca), twitter and, their websites are all linked and working in concert. Through REMAX, Rosskoka has the largest web presence of any real estate company in North America. Our company – REMAX Hallmark – has over 550 agents in Toronto and Muskoka. They carry Rosskoka listings on their websites.
Locally Rosskoka maintains a high community profile – they sponsor to Bala’s own New Actors’ Colony Theatre. They have sponsored charity golf tournaments, are strongly associated with Muskoka Hospice and Habitat for Humanity. In August, the “My Muskoka” article in Muskoka Magazine was written by Monika Schnarre, wife of Rosskoka team member, Storey Badger.
Rosskoka believe every property has its own niche. They craft their service to represent the niche, maximize first impressions and meet the needs of the sellers.
They have opened and closed cottages for the season on behalf of our sellers. Some are remote from Muskoka and traveling back is onerous. Some clients have security concerns because of artwork and other valuables on site. For them, Rosskoka provide a concierge service of opening and locking the cottage for every showing – and being on site in the event of questions.
Rosskoka is a team of 4 licensed realtors and with that, the flexibility to ensure that service requirements are met and exceeded.
As part of the listing agreement, Rosskoka set out the basis for communication. Selling a property can be a lengthy proposition. It can also be stressful. They know that by establishing communication expectations and requirements up front, they align expectations and reduce stress.
Rosskoka always communicate after a showing. They always provide market analysis and updates – especially when another property is listed or has a price change that could impact your property. We will agree on the frequency of regular communication. Some clients only want to hear from their realtor when there has been a status change, others prefer to hear weekly or bi-monthly regardless.
Rosskoka’s communication plan is flexible to meet your preferences.
Rosskoka Team is among the most successful realtors in Muskoka/Haliburton. For the last 3 years no one has sold more Muskoka waterfront property than they have (Muskoka Haliburton Association of Realtors data). For the last several years the average number of waterfront ‘ends’ a Muskoka realtor can expect is 3. Last year Rosskoka had 38 and YTD have 26.
Other than the numbers, the real ‘tale of the tape’ is the number of clients who return to Rosskoka for second and third transactions. This year they have more than $10 million of property sold and/or listed with people they have worked with previously.
Having a network and database is one thing. Having the ability to make that database and network work is another. Rosskoka Team is full time. They work for you.
What clients say about our work is critical to our success. There is a section in this web site devoted to client comments. We welcome your perusal. We are happy to put you in touch with people we have worked with and for – so your questions can be answered directly.
Below are a list of recent client comments.
Our Customers Speak:
“Thank-you for helping us find our ideal Muskoka property on Lake Rosseau. You made us very comfortable from our first meeting right through the final completion of the purchase. Your outstanding knowledge of the area is a definite asset, and your honest and straight forward approach to comparing our options helped guide us through the decision process. We will definitely recommend you to anyone looking for Muskoka property.”
“Nadine and I wanted to write a short note to thank you for all your help in securing our Muskoka cottage for us. We are delighted with the result.
In particular, we wanted to thank you for passing along your in-depth knowledge of the area. As a full time resident, and someone whose family has been on Lake Joseph since 1925, you have a vast breath of knowledge and local connections that were invaluable to us. Whenever we raised an issue, you doggedly researched it for us and provided a complete and timely response. You were constantly available to us and worked harder for us than any other realtor we have dealt with in the past.
In finding our property, you stayed focused on our particular requirements and showed us the kind of properties that fit those requirements as closely as possible.
During the negotiations, you promoted our position on the issues very well. Furthermore, you did so with a view to having us succeed in the negotiations without compromising our position on the key issues. In short, you helped us get the deal we wanted without being “pushy”!
Please feel free to share our letter with any prospective clients. Furthermore, we would be happy to discuss our particular experience with
them directly, should you so wish.
We look forward to seeing you up north this summer, and wish you the best of luck!”
“This letter is to thank you for your outstanding effort in the execution of our real estate acquisition on Lake Muskoka.
From the time you were initially in contact with my sister in law to the final execution of the purchase agreement your conduct and professionalism was remarkable. There are many outstanding real estate agents; however, there are few that would attend to the details as you did in this purchase. in addition, you managed the conflicting interests of 2 owners with tact and diplomacy.
Aside from the excellent real estate advice and attention to details during the purchase negotiation process you were proactive and anticipated the unique needs of our situation well in advance so we could take the appropriate action.
Your support of our purchase has continued past the closing date as you have acted on our behalf in the selection and management of local contractors to complete renovations of the property.
At all times you were calm and collective. You have been strong in your convictions and always represented a valid point of view during the decision making process.
We do not hesitate in making this strong endorsement of your capabilities and would be pleased to serve as a professional reference in the future.”
“Thank you for helping us find an outstanding cottage. We are looking for forward to many memorable summers in Muskoka with our family. Finding a cottage is a difficult task given the limited number of cottages on the market, and having young children makes it tougher to make frequent trips to see listings. We appreciated your willingness to preview cottages to determine if they would meet our needs. That saved us making frequent day trips to see cottages that were not suitable.
After a few months of searching we began to think it was going to be tough to find good value in the Muskoka cottage market. You stayed on top of new listings through the summer and forwarded them to us immediately. Your persistence paid off. When our cottage was listed you contacted us before the first showing date and were able to negotiate with the seller before a significant number of showings occurred. I believe if we had hesitated, our family would be spending another summer in the city. Thanks again for your help and insight.”
“After launching a relationship from Peter Steele’s website, Peter helped us in our search for a waterfront cottage in Muskoka.
Our afternoon ventures visiting lakefront properties were made pleasurable and constructive thanks to Peter’s courteous and knowledgeable company. When it came time to become serious about a property, Peter’s calm, informative and thorough approach was much appreciated.
It was truly a pleasure working with Peter and we have no doubt that he will continue to be successful in helping other families find their dream properties as we did.
Thanks again to Peter.”
“Cathy & I thank you for the outstanding performance and professionalism you have exhibited up to and including the closing of our property on Lake Joseph in August, 2006. Your experience in the area was invaluable. Your openness to our views and suggestions were appreciated. The overall result for our specific needs was excellent.
In the event you wish to use our names as a reference, please feel free to have any of your clients call us directly at (403) 827-4541. We would be happy to discuss our experience with anyone who wishes to call.”