After reading a blog post “5 Selling Tips For Winter” by my friend and fellow REALTOR® Jenn Aunger, I was inspired to write about a day in the life of a cottage country REALTOR®. In particular, REALTORS® servicing cottage country need to prepare themselves for cottages that have been winterized for the season; meaning that plumbing is not operational, heat is not on, and driveways are not shovelled. With this in mind, the recreational REALTOR® needs to be equipped with:
1. A snow shovel. Since cottages are not occupied during the winter driveways aren’t shovelled so be prepared to park on the side of the road and shovel a path to the door way! And remember to arrive plenty early to give yourself lots of time for the drifts of snow waiting for you.
2. Slippers. Again, because cottages aren’t occupied in the winter there is no heat on. Your feet are going to freeze so always carry a pair of slippers with you to wear when showing buyers through the cottage. And of course, don’t forget to suggest to your buyers to bring along a pair of slippers so their feet done freeze either!
3. Carry a Thermos Full of Your Favourite Hot Beverage. You’re going to be frozen to your inner core after showing cottages without heat so you’ll be glad if you bring along a thermos full of hot tea, coffee or cocoa!
4. Buy a Pair of TouchScreen Winter Gloves. Ever tried typing a message on your SmartPhone while wearing gloves? You can’t … unless you own a pair of TouchScreen winter gloves. Invariably while showing property you’re going to have to look some information up on your SmartPhone.
5. Flashlight. Many cottage owners turn the hydro off during the winter. There’s nothing like stumbling around in the dark in search of the hydro panel looking for the main disconnect to switch the power on.
Of course, winter is a slower time for real estate sales in cottage country. Some buyers hibernate, inventory shrinks, and sales languish. However, with fewer cottages on the market in winter sellers have a competitive advantage. Serious buyers are always looking for properties regardless of the season so don’t rule winter cottage buying out.
If you’re thinking of buying a cottage, click here to download a copy of the Erie’s Edge Cottage Buyer’s e-Guide. And if you’re a REALTOR® who specializes in the sale of recreational properties. what else is a “must have” for showing cottages during winter?