Cape Agent vs. Off-Cape Agent: Does it Really Make a Difference?
The Cape House Show: Episode 24
You may already see the logic behind using a local agent, but some people actually may not (particularly on Cape Cod). So, this is a really hyper local video today because I’ve run into a couple of situations recently where I had contact with off-cape agents and on-cape listings.
So, one of my interactions was with a woman who called me from Plymouth, MA. Now, I’m in Dennis and said to me”You know what, my aunt needs to sell her house it’s and Dennis. Can you help us?” Without hesitation, I told her “Absolutely” and will pay her a referral fee for the kindness of giving me business. Everyone wins.
The other one was for Dennis again. I actually called her because I saw this come up. This agent was from the Rhode Island state line. Like, we are a solid hour and a half with no traffic and we’re in the middle of summer. I thought “What are you thinking?!” Not only was she more than an hour and half away, she doesn’t have access to our MLS – Cape Cod & Islands Association of Realtors – which leads me to the reasons why using a local agent is where it’s at!
So first of all, we actually have our own MLS on Cape Cod. We’ve been accused by people on the other side of the bridge of being sort of territorial and whatnot – and I can totally see their reasoning!
But here’s the thing: we are connected to mainland Massachusetts by two, thin threads of bridge. We are essentially an island. We really are a unique, real estate ecosystem, and by necessity, we have our own local MLS which is where virtually all of the business that’s done on Cape Cod shows up. Now, some of it does show up on a regional MLS that folks on the other side of the bridge are on. The smart agents down here are on both of them (like we are), but when you’re using the regional MLS, you don’t see all of the activity down on the Cape.
So, without that knowledge, how could you possibly set a sensible price for this house?
Another downfall to not having your listing on the local MLS, is that you can’t show it on any realtor tours, which is CRITICAL. You want all of the agents who do business in that town to be able to get a look at that house and if your agent isn’t on that MLS, well too bad, so sad. We’re never going to see it. Not only am I going to not see it in person, we’re not even going to see it online (unless we happen to be going through the other MLS or skim Zillow or other portals). Sometimes we’ll try doing that just to try to hit ‘em, but it’s not a guarantee.
Now, remember how I mentioned that we’re connected by these two thin strips of bridge? Well, that’s it! Why does it matter? If someone calls to show your house, (let’s say is in Dennis) and your agent is off-cape (let’s say in Swansea), they are going to need at least an hour and a half to get there. So, if you’ve got someone cruising through the neighborhood and they happen to notice your house is for sale and want to see it, they’re not going to get to see it. That’s no good.
You know what Cape Cod listing agents do? We go to our showings so that we can sell your house! When I’m there I can talk about your house, tell potentials buyers what’s great about it, and really convey the story of the house. Some agents these days will just put it on a lockbox so other agents can come and go in your house. Do you really want that? I know don’t! I don’t want people just coming in my house without my agent there! No way man.
The final reason that you want to use a local agent is because we have relationships with local vendors, such as home and septic inspectors, and we also have a relationship with the folks at the Town Hall. We know all the ins and the outs, the quirks, and nuances of what happens down here – and trust me, it is quirky! There’s a lot to know, so it’s really much better to go with a local expert.
If you’re feeling obliged to your friend who lives off-cape, this is what you do: say “Hey Betty, I would like to sell my cape house. I love you, I think you’re great, and I think you’re probably a great agent in Hingham (or wherever it is you are) but could you help me find a local agent?” What they’ll do is they’ll call someone (like me), and we give them a part of the commission for giving us the business. So you’re still taking care of your friend, but YOU are getting taken care of. At the end of the day, your friend should be thinking more of you then of themselves and make sure that you are getting the best service possible.
I would no more take a listing in Plymouth then I think someone from Plymouth should take one in Dennis. That’s just how it goes, but you know what? I have friends everywhere! So if you do have a listing in Plymouth, Florida, San Diego or wherever it is you need to sell a piece of property, chances are I know someone there or I can find someone there that’s really good and a good match for you. It helps me and it helps you make sure that you get the best service you can possibly get.
So remember: Go local, stay local, and use your local agents!
I would no more take a listing in Plymouth then I think someone from Plymouth should take one in Dennis. That’s just how it goes, but you know what? I have friends everywhere! So if you do have a listing in Plymouth, Florida, San Diego or wherever it is you need to sell a piece of property, chances are I know someone there or I can find someone there that’s really good and a good match for you. It helps me and it helps you make sure that you get the best service you can possibly get. If you would like to schedule a call with us and discuss what options are out there, contact us today!
Mother. Singer. Runner. Dog Parent. Realtor. Speaker. Cape Cod Local Expert. When I want the freshest oysters, I don’t go to the fish counter at the grocery store; I go to John, the East Dennis oyster guy. When my husband wants a perfectly tailored suit, we don’t go to the mall; we go to Puritan Clothing in Hyannis. When I want the best chocolate this side of the Alps I don’t go to the candy store, I go to The Hot Chocolate Sparrow in Orleans. A Cape Codder since I was a kid, I can find you the right house, bank, builder, school, auto mechanic, and yes, even the right oyster guy.