All posts by Marti Reeder

About Marti Reeder

I am a full-time, full-service REALTOR® for John L. Scott, Kent-Covington, Washington. Serving primarily the South Puget Sound, my goal is to provide my clients with first class service and to make the home buying or home selling process as simple as possible.

If Two Heads are Better than One … Just Imagine What FOUR Heads Could Do for You!

CORRECTED team photo

Historically, real estate agents worked in one of two ways – as individuals, or as a two-person team. Typically these teams were married partners, although every once in a while you would run across a parent-child team, or even a team with siblings. And even less often, you would see non-related colleagues teaming up, often women who had other responsibilities in life (managing their households, running kids to soccer practice, volunteering at school) that didn’t allow them to participate full-time in the business.

And then, in the early 2000’s, we began to see the emergence of teams as a business model. Gary Keller, of the real estate firm Keller Williams, was a champion of this model, which has spread to many other companies in various forms.

If you think about it, teams really make a lot of sense. Not just for the team members, but primarily for consumers.

There are nine reasons that I feel a team is the only way to go when you are buying and selling real estate. Here they are:

  1. Increased efficiency. Let’s say you have to build a car. Would you rather have to know how to build an entire car by yourself, or would you prefer to be an expert at attaching the wheels, knowing that the person next to you is an expert at installing a drive shaft, and that another person would add the spark plugs? When individual team members can devote time to working in their area of specialty, they have the opportunity for deep learning and development of skills.
  2. More ideas = better results. Four heads really are better than two!
  3. Drawing upon natural skills and abilities. Each of our team members has things they’re naturally good at. No more trying to do our best at something that doesn’t come easily and delivering less-than-optimal results! Instead, we turn to the team member best equipped to help.
  4. Improved access; speedier turn times. In a traditional sole proprietor model, clients often have to wait for help and/or answers if their agent was on an appointment with another client. That rarely happens in a team model.
  5. Can be in 2, 3, or 4 places at a time. One of the huge benefits of a team is having the ability to accomplish multiple tasks at the same time. For example, one team member can be showing homes, one can be back at the office preparing a purchase offer, and yet another could be helping a seller prepare their home to sell.
  6. Each person can showcase and shine in their area of specialty. Everyone has unique skills and things at which they excel. A strong team allows everyone to feel great about the value they bring and increases their chance to be a superstar in their area of expertise.
  7. Having a team promotes – and actually forces – you to look at things from a different perspective. That often leads to improvements in how you perform your work … and that means a better end-result for clients.
  8. Well-defined structures and processes eliminate confusion. When you manage a team, it’s absolutely critical that there’s a clear process and workflow. Clients benefit from the structure and a “no surprises” experience.
  9. Coverage when “life happens”. We’ve all had those days – you wake up sick (or worse yet, your kids are sick), the car won’t start, or your phone gives up the ghost. Without a team behind you, any one of those things could grind your day to halt and force you to cancel your client appointments and/or work time. But with a team behind you, someone can step in to cover.
  10. It’s simply more fun! Life really is more fun when you’re surrounded by a team of great people. It’s one of my favorite things about teamwork.

After many years of working with my amazing team, I can assure you that it is the most rewarding way for me to work. And based on feedback from my clients, they love the fact that there are four skilled and caring professionals helping them achieve their real estate dreams.

Want to know more about the Team Marti experience? Reach out to us at: teammarti@johnlscott.com | 253-246-8938

 

Vote for me as ‘Best of Kent’ for a chance to WIN!

I am so honored to have been named “Best Realtor” in Kent NINE times. I’d love to have your vote again this year! Just fill out the Kent Reporter’s 2018 “Best of Kent” ballot online, or a paper copy in the weekly Kent Reporter, and submit before May 3rd. You’ll need to vote in at least half the categories for your vote to count, but that will be a fun way to choose your favorite Kent people, places and things. I’ll be voting for my favorites too!

As my thank you for taking the time to complete your ballot, if you share my Facebook post and say “I voted for Marti Reeder,” I will enter your name into a drawing for dinner for two at Paolo’s Italian Restaurant…. the most delicious & authentic Italian meal you’ll ever have – compliments of Team Marti!

Thanks, as always, for your support!

~ Marti

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If you’re thinking about selling your home and are trying to figure out how to select an agent, here are three things to keep in mind.

 

#1: LOTS OF FISH IN THE POND

There are over 25,000 real estate agents currently licensed in this area.

Yes – 25,000+ — and many of them are new to the business.

And I can promise you there’s nowhere near that many homes for sale. What does that mean to you as a seller?

For starters, it means there are a very large number of real estate agents who aren’t doing much business (the old 80-20 rule is at play in my industry, just as it is in many others).

And if an agent isn’t doing much business, you probably don’t want them involved in YOUR business. Right?

This applies whether the agent is new to the business, or a seasoned agent who simply doesn’t transact much business.

SOLUTION: Hire an agent who is both experienced and active in the market.

#2: AGENTS “BUYING” YOUR LISTING

Unfortunately, we see this happen all too often. During a listing appointment an agent who is desperate for the business will, in effect, “buy” the listing from the seller by promising one of two things (and sometimes even both of them!):

  • They overinflate the estimated value of the home
  • They offer to perform a “commissionectomy” on themselves, cutting their commission to virtually nothing

With these kinds of promises sellers can’t help but see dollars signs dancing in front of their eyes. But it’s not quite as rosy as it sounds.

Here are the challenges you should be aware of with both these issues.

A great agent is skilled at pricing homes. They don’t need to try to trick a seller into listing with them based on an unrealistic price. Great agents have proven marketing strategies, collateral that is effective across multiple media, an ability to price accurately, and a stellar reputation.

Great agents also don’t need to win by discounting their fee. They win a seller’s business through a combination of the factors mentioned above. When you’ve had a listing appointment with a great agent, you’re probably not focused on their fee … you’re focused on their results, see that they are worth every penny of their compensation, and can’t wait to sign a listing agreement because you know that their skills and experience (not overpricing or commission-cutting) is what will make them the most money.

SOLUTION: If you’re in a listing appointment with an agent who is overpricing your home (and underpricing their service) it’s time to interview another agent.

 

#3: DO YOU WANT A G.P. TO PERFORM YOUR HEART SURGERY?

In every line of work, there are generalists … and there are specialists. I don’t know about you, but when I have work done – whether it’s on my car, my house, my finances, or my health – I like to work with experts and specialists.

There are many areas of expertise that can apply to real estate, but there’s area in particular that is worth considering – geographical expertise and specialization.

If you live in Kent, does it make sense to hire an agent who works primarily in Queen Anne? (Even though that’s where I was raised!) If you live in Covington, will a Lynnwood agent be a good choice? Got a house in Maple Valley? Why are you interviewing a Tacoma agent?

I think you see where I’m going with this.

Real estate is hyper-local. When you hire an out-of-area agent you risk leaving money on the table because that agent doesn’t understand the nuances of your community and your hyper-local real estate market.

SOLUTION: Hire a listing agent with experience showing and listing homes in your neighborhood.

 

UP NEXT WEEK: The four burning questions EVERY seller has (and a fifth that they should have too!)

Team Marti’s Winter Home Maintenance Checklist 2017

Team Marti's Winter Home Maintenance ChecklistLike it or not, winter is just 10 days away. If you haven’t already prepped your home for winter and freezing temps, there’s still time. Use our handy checklist to make sure you and your home are ready for winter weather:

  • Reverse the direction of your ceiling fans so the blades rotate clockwise. Keep on a low speed to push air down from the ceiling into your room.
  • Have your furnace surfaced at the beginning of the season and make sure you change the filters according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Lower your thermostat or use a programmable thermostat to save on energy costs.
  • Remove window screens and install storm windows and doors, if you have them.
  • Shut off exterior water sources and cover the faucets to prevent freezing.
  • Insulate exposed pipes to prevent burst pipes.
  • Insulate your hot water heater.
  • Block drafts from doors and windows and seal cracks with door sweeps, door gaskets, calking and weather stripping.
  • Have your chimney cleaned annually to decrease your risk of fire and buildup and residue.
  • Remove any portable air conditioners and cover condensing units.
  • Make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear and free of debris. This will be particularly helpful when the heavy rains come.

 

10 Reasons South King County, Washington is a Great Place to Live

If you’re thinking of relocating to the Seattle area, and are wondering which area to choose, consider South King County, Washington. Here are 10 reasons it is a great place to live!

  1. Convenient location. Whether you live in Kent, Covington or Maple Valley, South King County is located between Seattle and Tacoma with either major metro area being a 20- to 30-mile drive, depending on your destination.
  2. Easy access to mass transit. King County has a great mass transit system, including everything from buses and water taxis to trains and SeaTac International Airport.
  3. Breathtaking views. On a clear day, you can view the majestic Mount Rainier from just about any vantage point. You can also see the Green River (Kent and Auburn), the Cedar River (Renton) and Puget Sound (Des Moines, Burien and Federal Way). Most cities in South King County also have lakes. Renton, of course, is on the tip of Lake Washington. Kent has Lake Meridian, Clark Lake and Lake Fenwick, and Maple Valley has the beautiful Lake Wilderness.
  4. Fabulous parks and trails. All of our South King County cities have access to fabulous parks and trail systems, as well as county and state parks and trails. In Kent, for example, we have the Soos Creek Trail, the Green River Trail and the Interurban Trail. In Des Moines, there is Saltwater State Park and Dash Point State Park, both on Puget Sound.
  5. Shopping. We all need to shop, whether we like it or not, and South King County has a wealth of options including The Landing (Renton), Kent Station (Kent), The Outlet Collection Seattle (Auburn) and Southcenter (Tukwila). In addition, we have lots of boutiques, shops, and locally owned stores.
  6. Dining. South King County is home to very diverse populations, bringing people from all over the world together. To celebrate our diversity, we have a wide range of dining options featuring everything from All American diners and Asian flavors to Indian and Ukrainian food. No matter where you choose to call home, there will be dozens – if not hundreds – of options nearby.
  7. Arts and entertainment. South King County is rich with culture, including long-time favorites like free summer concerts and the year-long Spotlight Series in Kent to seasonal festivals like Sausage and Cider Fest in Covington and Renton River Days in Renton. Live music, theatre, art galleries and studios, movie theatres and much more.
  8. Schools. From award-winning school districts to local colleges like Green River College and Renton Technical College, there is a wide range of educational opportunities in South King County, serving students of every age and ability.
  9. Weather. People across the nation have the misperception that it always rains in this part of the state. Yes, we get rain in the Seattle area, primarily in November, December and January, but we rarely have snow. And our summers are breathtaking. In Kent, for example, our average temperature in December is 46, and in August our average temperature is 78, according to U.S. climate data.
  10. People. We love the diverse populations that make up South King County, and we are proud that people from around the world call this area home. We have hundreds of cultures and languages represented here, and we love that sharing that with each other, as evidenced by the many cultural events and festivals here including the Kent International Festival, the Khalsa Day Parade and the Renton International Festival, just to name a few.

If you are looking for a home in Kent, Covington, Maple Valley, Auburn, Renton, Federal Way or Black Diamond, there are countless reasons to live here. If you’re looking for specific information, please let us know. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you have about the area. We love calling South King County home – we know you will too!

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20 Tips to Prepare Your House for Sale

Thinking about selling your home this summer? We’ve got 10 tips to help you improve your home’s curb appeal to draw in potential buyers, and 10 tips to make your house feel like home to lucky homebuyers. Have questions about selling? Let us know. Team Marti is here to help!

 

Testimonial: ‘Diligent, Proactive and Caring’

Marti FB profile pic“Marti works hard to understand what you want and find it. She keeps you informed in every step of the process, and she will go out of her way to get answers to questions that you have throughout the process.

I just bought my 3rd home, and I have worked with many realtors. I have never worked with a realtor as diligent, proactive, and caring as Marti. I can’t think of any other realtor that I would rather work with. Thanks, Marti!”

~ Sandra Gores on Realtor.com

Testimonial: ‘Full Knowledge’ and ‘Sincere Interest’

Marti FB profile pic“I have had the privilege of working with Marti and her many buyers and sellers. Taking every opportunity to obtain full knowledge of every aspect of her industry. Providing service with a sincere interest in taking care of your every real estate need. I would highly recommend her when deciding to purchase or sell property. You won’t regret it”

~ Angela Taylor Ford on Realtor.com

 

10 Tips to Ensure a Smooth Home Move

Whether you are moving across town or across the country, you want to be sure you pack carefully and efficiently. Here are some great packing tips, compliments of Two Men and a Truck.

  1. 10 Tips for a Smooth Home MovePack items from the same room in the same set of boxes. For example, put all items from your master bedroom into one set of boxes. This will make it easier to unpack later.
  2. Label each box on the top and the side with the name of the room it goes in (e.g., living room, kitchen, master bath, etc.), and mark it FRAGILE for delicate and breakable items like glasses, picture frames and dishes. If it is something you’ll need fairly soon, mark it accordingly – NEED – so it makes its way to the designated spot.
  3. Use brand new boxes that are sturdy. Liquor stores are a great resource for small and medium boxes with dividers. Warehouse stores like Costco and Sam’s Club often have extra boxes too, and your local moving company will have boxes and other moving supplies available for purchase.
  4. Tape boxes with packing tape, not duct tape or masking tape.
  5. Do not use printed newspaper for wrapping fine china or crystal. Instead, use unprinted paper, available at your moving supply store.
  6. Pack heavier items in small boxes, like books and dishes.
  7. When packing dishes, pack the dishes facing upward. Wrap each piece individually with padding in between items. Ideally, use specialized, divided boxes available at your moving supply store.
  8. Pack boxes with moving essentials – soap, paper towel, cleaner, toilet paper, extra clothes, towels, snacks, bottled water – last. These items should go in your car or be the last on (and first off) the moving truck.
  9. Pack important documents like health records, insurance policies and passports in one box that you can keep with you or put with your moving essentials box. These documents can be difficult to replace, so make it easy on yourself by knowing where they are at all times.
  10. If you have to disassemble furniture or appliances to move them, keep all of the individual parts (screws, legs, etc.) together in a labeled, airtight bag. This is also helpful for curtain rods and tie-backs. Keep all the pieces together.

Testimonial: Marti earned her commission!

Marti Testimonial August 2015

“I recently sold an investment property/rental with Marti Reeder as our seller’s agent.

I found Marti through researching agents on Zillow. I interviewed two other agents as well, including the agent that helped me purchase the property 6 years ago. Marti impressed me so much that I had no problem signing listing papers with her the next day.

Communication was a top priority for me, as I was selling from half way across the country. She is quick to respond and to the point, whether it’s via phone or email. Anytime I had any concerns, I knew I could send her a text or email and she’d get back to me quickly.

My house needed some repairs and updates to make it turnkey, and Marti was very insightful as to what would and wouldn’t pay for itself in the sale. She also gave recommendations for a contractor and landscaper, both of which I used and was satisfied with.

Once there was a signed purchase agreement, her team handled almost everything, with minimal work from me. I signed the documents on my end from my home halfway across the country, and the money was in my bank account the day after we closed. A truly painless transaction.

Marti is one of the only agents I have worked with that made me feel like she actually earned her commission. I can’t recommend her enough.”

Read this testimonial and others on Zillow.