In the Internet age where Google is king, some buyers and sellers question the benefits are of using a Realtor like me to help them buy or sell a vacation home. After all, many articles and websites help consumers DIY just about anything. Shows on HGTV paint a fake picture of the home buying process. Although it’s considered “reality TV,” at the end of the day…it’s still TV. Very few buyers look at only 3 houses and pick one. Realtors and vacation home sales still go hand in hand, at least in the greater Lake Wallenpaupack / Lake Ariel region.
While individuals vary, most people need a real estate expert on their side to help with all the challenges and details that crop up. For most people, buying and/or selling a vacation home is definitely not something you want to DIY (Do It Yourself)! Everyone needs an advocate.
Why Using a Realtor To Buy Or Sell a Vacation Home Is a Good Thing:
There’s more to buying real estate than finding a house you like online!
OVER THE YEARS, there have been many reasons given to use a Realtor when buying or selling a home.
To make it short, sweet, and simple: doesn’t it make sense to have someone on your side who has been there, done that…a lot? Yes, you can look up homes online. That’s the easy part. But what about other aspects of buying a home? Yes, sellers can post their home for sale on Zillow or even Realtor.com as a FSBO. Is that all there is to it?
Buyers: What about homeowner associations? Some of HOAs in around Lake Wallenpaupack and other areas like Milford and Dingmans Ferry have some information online. However, many do not. Some are gated, some are not. Most of the non-gated communities have very strict rules about strangers trespassing (even if you’re looking for a home you saw posted online.)
Maybe you want a home outside of an HOA. What about septics and wells, and lake rights? What about potential use? Property boundaries?
What about loan options? Should you use a bank, or a mortgage company? Do you need an attorney? Will any attorney do? An experienced Realtor like me can help you navigate these and other issues.
Sellers: There’s More To Selling Than Putting it on Zillow
With all the online portals open to sellers who go the for sale by owner route, it’s tempting to think you don’t need a Realtor. After all, why pay a commission when you can list online “for free?” It’s one thing if you are an owner-occupant, but another when you are a typical Lake Wallenpaupack vacation home owner you may live 2+ hours away. How many times do you want to drive up here to show the home to potential buyers, some of whom end up being looky-loos or tire-kickers? Marketing the home online is the fun part, the easy part. The rest of it is much more involved.
BTW: Oldie but goodie story: The owner of a famous for sale by owner website ended up using a Realtor to sell his home.
You Need a Skilled Negotiator
Hiring a negotiator to be your advocate could save you thousands, perhaps tens of thousands of dollars. Each step of the way – from the original offer, to issues after a home inspection, appraisal issues…you need someone to help protect your interests all along the way.
What is the home you’re buying or selling worth in today’s local Wayne & Pike County PA real estate market?
There is so much information about home sales and mortgage rates; how do you know what’s going on specifically around Lake Wallenpaupack, Lake Ariel, Hawley, Honesdale? What about Lackawaxen or Milford? These locations in Wayne and Pike County are all fairly unique and do not necessarily fit into a national “average.” You need a local real estate expert – not Zillow, and not the USA Today Real Estate section. Once again, Realtors and buying or selling a vacation home go hand in hand.
You need someone to tell you the truth, not just what they think you want to hear. I don’t sugar coat and I don’t get cagey with some BS song and dance routine. — Karen Rice, Realtor
Working with an experienced real estate agent who understands and knows the local market will make your vacation home buying or selling experience an educated one.