In the Coachella valley (Palm Springs area) we have a substantial input of capital coming into the real estate market that many places in the country doesn’t. Our fellow North Americans have a dollar on par with the U.S. that they seldom historically enjoy. Combine that with a burgeoning 45+ group of individuals who want to put a plan in place for their own retirement and you wind up with a property profile that appeals to our Canadian neighbors.
If you would like to attract these buyers here’s a few tips on how to do so:
1) Location. Canadians want to be able to offset their costs of ownership with a seasonal rental that still gives them time to enjoy the property a few weeks or more a year until they fully retire. Is your property in a golf course, tennis, or otherwise association that would make it rentable? If so, you have a good head start on attracting a buyer from Canada.
2) View. A very important factor for our seasonal northern owners is which way does your back yard face? Canadians prefer it to face South #1 and West #2. They are coming here for the sun and they want all of it they can get. While you cannot change the direction your view faces you can either maximize the use of that space so chairs, BBQ’s, etc. get the most from the sun, or realize that this is likely to be one of your weaker attractions for luring in a purchaser from the Great White North.
3) Condition. Canadians usually don’t mind a little reconditioning on a property. As a matter of fact, most of the Canadian buyers are very handy with simple to complex refurbishing of properties. They are a handy folk who can often see value beyond an unpainted wall, or a none too perfect flooring situation. Generally speaking, you are better off to leave a little bit of something for them to deal with and compensate instead with your price, which we’ll discuss next.
4) Market. Your price needs to be at the bottom of it unless there’s a real reason your home justifies a higher price. Be honest with yourself. Get your agent to walk with you through some of your competition so you can see firsthand what your competing against. Almost never – ok, let’s just say never – will a Canadian pay for the highest price. They are a thrifty people who won’t let go of their dollars easily. But they will recognize value. They also like low HOA’s, low property maintenance, or other monthly expenditures and they generally prefer desert landscaping to grass. After all, they are coming from a rain forest. They want their experience here to be different from their home.
Keep these things in mind. And if you want a real appraisal of how your home would appeal to the Canadian buyers seek the help of a professional.
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