Hey gang! I wanted to share with you some of the tips, best practices, and little nuggets of wisdom I learned this month all about working with Seniors in the purchase or sale of their homes.

I had the pleasure earlier this month of interviewing Kelly O’Dwyer on the podcast, a gifted real estate agent based out of Nanaimo who specializes in working with seniors and the retirement community. She had tons of great valuable tips and information to share from her experience, and if you haven’t had a chance yet to go listen to the full episode – check it out here: http://realestateagentmasterypodcast.com/

Here are my favourite top 5 little nuggets of wisdom from our conversation:

What seniors are looking for in an agent:

Seniors are looking for agents that know the area inside and out, and who understand the concept and different types of strata living, and can educate them on what they can get for their budget. They also want an agent who can get to know them on a level to understand what their wants and needs are in a home, whether that be things to keep them active, accessibility, or community and keeping social.

Pivot your process for non-tech savvy seniors

It’s important to pivot your process for some seniors who may not be as tech-savvy as other generations. These days, almost everything is done electronically, whether that be face time calls, emails, or e-signatures on contracts. Kelly recommended having extra iPads on hand to be able to lend out to clients if they don’t have access to a computer or a smartphone, as well as even teaching them how to use tools like realtor.ca and email programs. Don’t be afraid to bring it back old school style, and drop off some printed feature sheets to your senior clients, or just pick up the phone and have a non-tech conversation.

Consider affordability

Consider affordability when you’re working with seniors or retiree’s who are downsizing. Many seniors are working with a fixed income based on their retirement savings and pensions. This is where you can come in and help to give them a sense of how much their expenses in a certain home may be, including things like: strata fees or average maintenance expenses, city utilities or property taxes, parking costs, or even estimated gas consumption versus walkability.

Communication is key

Communication is key when selling a senior’s or retiree’s family home, especially if that home has been with the family for a long time. It’s common to develop an attachment to your family home when it’s filled with fond memories of babies first steps, family dinners, and important milestones. It’s common that the decisions and interactions in the selling of a family home can involve not just the registered home owners (senior parents), but the entire family (kids) as well. That can be a lot of chef’s in the kitchen, so to speak, and can be hard to manage if you don’t set ground rules for communication before hand.

Leaving a legacy

Seniors worry about spending their money on themselves, and not leaving a legacy (inheritance) to their kids and grandkids. It’s important to really break down the numbers to them and help them find a place that makes sense for their long term financial best interests, as well as for themselves and their living situation in the near future. Selling and downsizing, and investing are strategic ways that seniors can create a win win situation for themselves and their family’s best financial interests, in both the long term and the short term.

Hope you found that useful! Let me know!

Until next time, wishing you all the best!