Windermere Professional Partners

Selling Your Tacoma Rental From Out of State? You Need a Listing Agent You Can Trust

September 9, 2021

With Pierce County’s hot sellers market this year, many homeowners who have been holding onto rental properties have recently decided to sell. Oftentimes, these homeowners live out of state, cannot come back to sell their property, and as a result need to work with a real estate professional remotely.

Windermere Professional Partners REALTOR® Heather Redal has helped these sellers time and time again. Heather works with many buyers and sellers who are in the military, and frequently someone in the military will buy a home when they’re stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord to live in while they’re here. Then, once they’re stationed somewhere else, they’ll often rent out their home for a few years. When they’re ready to sell, it’s pretty typical that they might not have the time to come back to the area to prep the home.

No matter what the case may be, REALTOR® Heather Redal is ready to handle the entire home selling process for her clients. This was the case for one of her latest sold listings in North Tacoma. Keep reading to see how Heather helped her client from start to finish, providing a stress-free, hands-off experience!

A Bit of Backstory

Back in 2016, Heather helped her buyer client purchase this 4-bedroom, 2-bath home at 3516 N Villard St Tacoma, WA 98407 for $252,000. Whenever Heather helps someone who is in the military buy a home, she always educates them upfront about their options if they’re not likely to live in the area long-term. Of course, they can just sell their home when they leave. But Heather also helps her buyer clients understand their renting options.

Heather helps her clients determine whether or not rent for a specific property would be able to support a mortgage payment, whether they want to profit or break even every month, and whether or not it makes sense to put more money down. Heather likes to make sure that she and her clients have that conversation ahead of time so her buyers can make the best decision for their unique situation.

This particular client lived in their North Tacoma home for a few years, but as he’s in the military he was eventually PCS'd to another state. Before deciding to rent out the home, he called Heather to ask for her advice on how much money he should rent it for and whether he should use a property management company or manage the rental himself. In addition to being a REALTOR®, Heather also has her own properties that she manages, so she was ready to share her firsthand knowledge and experience.

Heather referred a couple of property managers to her client, and after doing more research, he ultimately decided to manage the property himself. (However, if you have to leave the country for work, Heather definitely recommends you hire a property manager—it’s just too hard to manage from another country!). Heather shared a lease agreement she had, and also referred him to a company that she uses to rent out her own properties. Basically, she just shared all of the resources she uses to manage her own rentals!

Deciding to Sell & Prepping the Home

While Heather’s client rented out his North Tacoma home for a few years, he had been keeping an eye on the Pierce County market in the meantime. He knew the real estate market here had been heating up, and when his tenant decided not to renew their lease, he figured it was the perfect time to sell. He called up Heather and asked what she thought he could sell it for, and then decided that as soon as his tenants moved out, he wanted to put the home on the market.

He wasn’t able to come back to the area, so Heather got to work on his behalf. When she begins to work on preparing any property for the market, she approaches it as if it were her own home and her own pocketbook.

Heather’s client gave his tenants ample notice that Heather would be coming over to assess the property, and the tenants were very gracious in accommodating what Heather needed to get done. Heather toured the home and took videos, pictures, and notes, and from here she decided what needed to happen to get the home looking its very best.

Heather’s goal was to get the house listed within a week of the tenant moving out so her seller client could avoid making additional payments on the house. She had 3 different contractors come out to the house so she could get bids on the work that needed to be done, and everything was scheduled out ahead of time. Once the tenant moved out, Heather and her team of contractors immediately got to work!

Heather had the interior and exterior of the home painted; a contractor worked on the deck and painted it; the entire property was pressure washed; landscaping was refreshed; some lighting, outlet covers, and a door were replaced; and several additional minor things were spruced up. Heather organized everything, and the seller was able to easily pay contractors remotely—there are so many different and easy ways to pay people these days!

Knowing the Right People Pays Off

REALTOR® Heather Redal has been a licensed real estate agent for over 10 years, and she has done 500+ transactions in that time. Heather’s extensive experience as both a buyer’s agent and listing agent benefits all of her clients—she knows both sides of a transaction like the back of her hand, and she can advise her clients on the best strategy from every angle.

Heather’s experience also means that she has acquired a solid list of reliable contractors who know her, trust her, and are ready to work with her to get the job done in a timely manner. She doesn’t receive any referral fees or kickback from contractors—the reward is in having a job done well for her clients. Sometimes, the contractors who Heather works with will even agree to wait until the home closes to get paid for their work; they know Heather and trust her to make sure they’re paid at the end of the day.

Showing the Home in It’s Best Light

Finally, Heather had the home cleaned from top to bottom, and then stagers came in to make the “house” look like a “home.” Heather had professional photos taken of the home, and used Windermere’s international and national program as well as social media to market the home. Heather has her own marketing contractor working for her, and she especially loves being able to employ stay-at-home moms!

With this particular North Tacoma home, Heather priced it at $450,000, which was right on the cusp of where it should be without overpricing it. Every home requires a unique pricing strategy depending on the location, price point, and local market trends, and this home was no different.

Right now, buyers in Pierce County are accustomed to bidding wars where there are dozens of offers on the table, but to Heather, you really only need a few solid offers to choose from. It might sound impressive to receive 25 or 30 offers on your listing, but Heather doesn’t want everyone to be writing offers if they don’t have to—she believes it’s a waste of everyone’s time. With this particular home, Heather’s goal was to get the most money in addition to strong financing terms (including increased down payment addendums), and the right inspection terms.

A Successful Sale It Takes Teamwork to Get it All Done!

This home was listed for $450,000 in June 2021, and it went pending in just 3 days and sold for $490,000. This home was an incredibly profitable investment for Heather’s client—remember, he purchased the home for $252,000 back in 2016!

One of the reasons that Heather Redal is able to serve her clients so well is in part thanks to the team of talented, hardworking professionals she has on her side:

“I’d love to give credit to my team because I wouldn’t be able to do anything that I do without them,” shares Heather. “Alyssa Reische with Windermere is a top-knotch buyer's agent on my team, Anne Losack with WPP is a wonderful stager and licensed showing agent on my team, Jean Blaize is a very talented Marketing Specialist on my team, and my husband Mark is a licensed realtor with WPP, plus he’s my photographer and licensed showing agent! I also have an amazing assistant, Kellie Faraca."

Would you like to learn more about selling your home in Pierce County? REALTOR® Heather Redal is ready to help! You can text or call Heather at (253) 363-5920, email her at [email protected], or reach out to her here.

You can also follow Heather on Facebook and Instagram.