What to Look for in an Investor Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents come in all shapes and specialties. Some have a preference for relocation clients, others prefer to work only in one or two specific neighborhoods.

But what if you’re looking to find a real estate agent for investors? Being able to tell you the after-repair value of a property or project the cap rate for the rental downtown takes a specialist’s eye.

An investor real estate agent has the knowledge of rehabbing and rental markets needed to ensure the investment property you’re eyeing makes good “cents.”

Investor Real Estate Pros at Gilpin Realty

Our team of Snohomish real estate professionals at Gilpin Realty has extensive experience in the rental, rehab, and investment property market. We can help guide you through your investment property journey, whether it’s your first flip or your latest project.

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What exactly makes a real estate agent ‘investor-friendly’

When shopping around for an “investor-friendly” real estate agent, you’ll want to confirm that they have the needed expertise to guide you through your purchase.

These are some of the skills that we recommend looking for in your real estate agent when searching for the perfect investment property.

1.   Knowledge of off-market properties

The savviest of savvy investment real estate agents always have a pulse on what will be coming on the market soon.

With Zillow, Redfin, and many other homebuying apps opening up the floodgates to data from the MLS, it’s a serious advantage to connect with an agent who is aware of opportunities that have yet to be made public.

Usually, an investor-friendly agent will have a relationship with a wholesaler who seeks to provide homeowners with cash offers. These could be distressed sales or just homeowners trying to move quickly without all of the pomp and circumstance of going on the market.

An agent with knowledge of off-market investment properties provides you with more options in seeking your next investment.

2.   Ability to critically analyze a deal

When working in residential real estate, a deal can be fairly straightforward for a generalist real estate agent to negotiate.

An investor-friendly real estate agent will be considering more factors than just purchase price and loan qualifications. They’ll factor in considerations like:

  • Renovation costs
  • Potential rental income
  • Tax projections
  • More

They’ll also help you consider other factors that you may not have analyzed, like vacancy allowance, projected maintenance, lawn care, repairs, and other capital expenditures.

By analyzing things from a critical point of view, an investor-friendly agent will help you target the sweet spot necessary to make profit on your investment. Where general real estate agents may not notice a hidden cost, a real estate agent for investors will go into the deal with eyes wide open.

3. Savvy in investor jargon

Every sector of real estate has its own unique jargon, but investments come with an even more specialized world of vocabulary.

An agent that knows the ins and outs of real estate investing will be able to easily make sense of the many dimensions of an investment property deal.

Here’s some of the basic terminology to make sure your agent is familiar with:

  • Gross rental yield
  • Internal rate of return (IRR)
  • ARV
  • Net operating income (NOI)
  • Cap rate
  • Gross rent multiplier (GRM)

While we’re not encouraging you to quiz your real estate agent on vocabulary in a classroom-type environment, you should absolutely vet their understanding of these types of critical concepts.

An agent suited for investments should be able to speak to these concepts with confidence, and you won’t have to question your agent’s competency along the way.

4. Their own real estate investing experience

An investor-friendly real estate agent can stand above the rest if they’re an investor themselves.

You can be certain at that point that they’ve been through every dimension of the process and understand both the micro and macro steps that go into it.

As it has been said, experience is the best teacher. Running numbers on an investment property for someone else is not the same as running them for yourself.

It should also be noted that working with a real estate agent who is actively investing may pose some risk of them reserving the best opportunities for themselves. To hedge against this, seek out an agent who has a different property investment strategy than what you desire for yourself.

All in all, working with a real estate agent who is actively investing helps you tap into potential roadblocks and opportunities so you can adjust your investment strategy accordingly.

Other Skills to Look For

This list of skills should be a good starting point for you as you look for your ideal investor real estate agent. But here are a few other factors that are important in your choice of agent:

  • In real estate full-time and experienced
  • Aware of regional opportunities
  • An extensive real estate network
  • Knowledge of high-ROI home renovations
  • Property management knowledge and experience

Investment Properties in Snohomish

Being a historic area, there are lots of investment properties in Snohomish waiting to be tapped into. Working with a real estate agent with investment experience puts you ahead of the average flipper swiping through MLS listings on Zillow.

Our office is filled with real estate professionals that have a proven track record in investments. Click here to get in touch with us today.

7 Snohomish Summer Events You Can’t Miss

Summer is almost here, and with it comes a whole slew of exciting events here in Snohomish! From homemade pies to muscle cars and everything in between, here are our top seven summer activities that you won’t want to miss.

1| Sunsets in Snohomish, June 11 to September 10, 3PM-8PM

On the second Saturday of every month this summer, the HDSA is hosting a wine walk tour around our cherished city. With over 150 years of history to admire and a different local winery featured in every visit, these evenings will not be easy to forget. As an added bonus, tickets include a credit toward your choice of the night’s samples, so your favorite bottles will be yours to enjoy for the future! Plan your date night and discover our countless local wineries as you hearken back to a simpler time.

2| Hot Cakes and Hoedown, June 26, 9AM-12PM

Bring your dancing shoes and an empty stomach to the Carnegie lawn for a brunch you won’t soon forget! Settle down for some delicious pancakes made by award-winning chef Cody Castiglia, then grab your cowboy hat and hit the green with Ryan Crowther for a good old-fashioned vinyl hoedown. All donations go toward the Snohomish Food Bank, so you’re providing food for more than just yourself when you attend. Good food, good music, and a good cause, what more can you ask for?

3| Kla Ha Ya Days, July 13 to 17

If you’ve never been a part of the Kla Ha Ya Days here in Snohomish, you are missing out. Every year, the town comes together for a five-day festival, complete with live music, parades, carnival rides, and more delicious food than you can eat in a week. Businesses from all over the city set up booths with plenty of giveaways and freebies, and you can drop by the Gilpin booth to say hi to your favorite real estate team!

Best of all, the whole event is supporting the growth of our community. All of the proceeds go straight back to the people of Snohomish, so your participation is funding local businesses, schools, and neighbors all across our town. Grab your tickets and we’ll see you there!

4| Snohomish Art Walk, August 18

As one of Washington’s oldest towns, Snohomish has deep historical roots that extend back to the 1800s. With those roots comes a rich and lively cultural heritage of art, music, and performance, all of which are on full display at this year’s Snohomish Art Walk! From sculptors to glass blowers to local musicians, the streets will be filled with artists from all over the county giving live demonstrations of their remarkable skills. Take a walk around, enjoy the artworks, and support your local creators in this fun-filled evening of vintage charms and modern renditions.

5| Snohomish Block Party, August 26 to 27

As the summer begins drawing to a close, what better way to wrap things up than with a neighborhood extravaganza? Far beyond your typical local block party, this event features live music from Billboard chart-topper Sir Mix-A-Lot, a comedy night with Joel McHale, dozens of vendors and local musicians, beer gardens, circus acts, and so much more! Tickets are on sale now, so clear your schedule and bring the whole family!

6| Mad Hatter Croquet Costume Derby, September 10, 3PM-7PM

We’re all mad here. In this madcap fundraiser evening at Harvey Field, adults aged 21 and over will join the Snohomish Lion’s Club for a delightful rendition of the classic gentleman’s game. Participants are encouraged to wear costumes and attire reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland, including everything from flamingo mallets to playing card suits. Food and drinks will be provided, so don’t be late for this very important date!

7| Classic Car Show, September 24, 10AM-4PM

Do you have a classic car that you don’t know what to do with? Are you captivated by history? Would you like to experience the golden age of America’s automotive industry? Look no further than the annual Snohomish Classic Car Show! We’re thrilled to sponsor this iconic local event for 2022! With hundreds of participants every year, it truly feels like you’ve stepped back into the past. Rock ‘n’ roll music fills the air, hot rods and vintage vehicles are on full display, and every breath carries with it the timeless whiff of barbecue and oil. This event is free to attend, so take a day off and enjoy the show!

There’s so much to do and love about Snohomish in the summertime! We hope to see you at one of these events!

Spring in Snohomish

Snohomish is home in every sense of the word, and we’re thrilled to enter the spring and summer seasons and look forward to all the community events these seasons entail!

Last month, we had the joy of participating in the Snohomish Easter parade, complete with our very first Gilpin float! We had so much fun handing out candy and beads along the route and getting to see so many of our favorite faces!

There’s nothing better than celebrating with our Snohomish neighbors again!

With that, we’re looking forward to all of Snohomish’s upcoming community events, including Kla Ha Ya Days and the Snohomish Classic Car Show!

Make sure you’re following Gilpin on Instagram to stay in the loop on the latest happenings in Snohomish!

7 Indoor Tasks to Get Your Home Fall and Winter Ready

The coming of fall means you’re about to start spending a lot more time indoors, which means it’s time to start working on that home care to-do list. Here’s a list of our top seven indoor projects to get you ready for the coming seasons!

1 | Clean your furnace

A good furnace will keep your house warm during the coming months, but it needs upkeep to do so. Replacing the filters and testing its efficiency will keep your furnace happy and your heating bill down. If you prefer to let the experts handle it, call us for a referral! 

2 | Check for drafts

Even the best furnace can’t keep up if outdoor air is getting in. Drafty doors and windows can dramatically lower the temperature in your home and allow other unwelcome guests to get in. To prevent this, check the edges of your doors and windows for any draftiness. Holding a lit candle nearby can help you detect where a breeze is coming in—simply hold the candle near a crack and observe any flickers.

3 | Reverse your ceiling fans

When it’s hot, the downdraft created by your fan helps cool the room. But when it’s cold, the motor on your fan should have a switch that reverses its direction. By toggling it, you’ll instead create an updraft that forces the heat into the rest of your room. Don’t forget to swap it back for summer, though!

4 | Check your batteries

House fires grow increasingly more common in the fall and winter months due to the increased use of fires and furnaces. As a result, your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms need to be armed and ready. Replace any dead batteries and test the alarms to make sure you’re prepared for anything.

5 | Swap out your drapes

Many windows do a relatively poor job of insulating your house from the cold. Conveniently, heavy drapes do an excellent job, providing you with the perfect opportunity for a seasonal change of decor. Open them in the morning to let in the sunlight, then close them in the evening to trap the heat.

6 | Test your generator

Your generator enables you to keep your refrigerator and other key items running during a power outage. For that reason alone, it’s important to make sure it’s still functioning properly before the storms come. Check the fluids to make sure they’re topped off and use a voltmeter to ensure that it’s producing the amount of power it should be. By checking it now, you’ll have the generator ready to go when you need it later.

7 | Check your foundations

As the outside temperatures grow colder, many critters gravitate to the warmest areas around. In many cases, that means your house. Rodents can carry various diseases into your home, and they have a nasty habit of chewing through wires, and getting into your food stores. Take a few minutes to check around the foundations of your house for any signs of entry. Even a hole the size of a quarter can give them access, so make any necessary repairs and contact your local pest control if you suspect any unwelcome guests.

By following these seven tips, you’ll be well-equipped for the coming seasons. Once you’re done, get yourself a warm drink, put on a cozy sweater, and enjoy some quality time with the family!

If you’re interested in a home value assessment and getting more personalized tips on how you can prepare your home for sale in the near future, contact us today! A Gilpin agent can help you identify simple ways to improve your curb appeal and maximize your home value! Call us today!

7 Outdoor Fall Tasks to Keep Your Home in Top Condition

As the days begin to grow crisp and cold, it’s time to pull out your to-do list for the fall. There are always a few vital items you need to cross off in order to keep your house looking its best in the coming seasons. To help you out, here’s our top seven tasks for all your outdoor projects!

1 | Clean the roof and gutters

Nobody likes a dirty roof and a flooded gutter. In addition to the reduced curb appeal, each has the potential to cause some costly damage. So as the leaves begin to fall, grab the rake and leaf blower and clear off the debris before it clogs the whole system! Make sure to rake the yard afterward!

2 | Check your trees for risky branches

Before you get off the roof, make sure there aren’t any dying tree limbs hanging over your property. Weak or broken limbs can become hazardous during stormy weather, damaging your roof, powerlines, and yard. While you’re at it, trim back the rest of your landscaping to keep it healthy for the spring!

3 | Clean and cover your patio furniture

Your favorite backyard furniture set is perfect for the summer, but it won’t last long without proper care. A little bit of maintenance will go a long way in counteracting any weather damage. If you can’t machine wash the cushion covers, try using a soft brush and a 1:16 vinegar to water spray, then store or cover them for next year!

4 | Bring in the hoses

A single frozen pipe can destroy your house’s plumbing overnight. So before the days begin to freeze, make sure to drain out your garden hoses and keep them safely stored away for the spring. If you have any exterior pipes that can’t be removed, wrap them in heat tape to prevent them from bursting!

5 | Fill in your driveway cracks

Cracks in the concrete might not seem like a big deal, but water can seep into them quite easily. When it freezes, it’ll expand, making the cracks even bigger. A quick treatment now with some crack filler will save you a lot of headaches while keeping your house looking new.

6 | Clean out your chimney

When you burn wood in the fireplace, it leaves behind both soot and creosote. While both of these are normal byproducts, they build up over time in your chimney, substantially increasing your risk for a house fire. In order to prevent this, invest in gear to clean out the inside of your chimney every year. If you use the fireplace regularly or have a notable buildup of creosote, hiring a chimney sweep is even better.

7 | Plant your spring flowers

Fall is planting season for tulips, azaleas, rhododendrons, and many other beautiful spring flowers. By planting them now, you give them the opportunity to take root in your garden and around your house, letting them blossom into the perfect highlight of your home. From curb appeal to a healthier lawn, flowers provide your home with a wide variety of benefits.

These seven projects will help you embrace the coming days with confidence and enthusiasm. By putting in the work today, you and your family will be prepared to capture all the laughter and joy that fall can bring!

If you’re interested in a home value assessment and getting more personalized tips on how you can prepare your home for sale in the near future, contact us today! A Gilpin agent can help you identify simple ways to improve your curb appeal and maximize your home value! Call us today!