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As a visitor to Traverse City, how many times have you watched all the people going by and thought to yourself, “It sure would be nice to live here in Traverse City?” Well, I’ll let you in on a little secret…most of the people living here had that same thought cross their mind at one time…including me back in 1992.Step 1 – Make a decision to make Traverse City your homeStep 2 – Timing. Not everyone is blessed with the ability to pick up roots and move to another town or state. If that is the case you might want to start out slow by visiting regularly, maybe checking into a time-share, buy a vacation home or even a rental property. Basically “Get Your Feet Wet”.Step 3 – Find yourself a good real estate agent and make them your new best friend. Trust me when I tell you this. A good realtor can be invaluable to you long before you make the final move. Each and every day it seems someone is calling me asking for an opinion on something, whether it is a new restaurant, a good mechanic, or a rental property for the 4th. We keep our eyes and ears open and we know what is going on…or we know someone who does.Step 4 – Find a great local lender. The only person who can make your deal a reality faster than a realtor is your lender. Your realtor should have several lenders they will recommend. What about your current lender? While I know there are dozens of great lenders out there, you want to be sure your lender understands the local trends, and products available to people buying in the Traverse City Area. Step 5 – Come take a tour. The best advice I can give you is to be 100% honest with your realtor. Whether you are planning to buy in 2 years, 10 years or next month, do yourself a favor and keep your realtor in the know. We know not everyone is planning to buy today but it is important to start somewhere. Have your agent show you the area, tour some neighborhoods, introduce you to some locals, recommend a hotel, or restaurant. Buy letting your agent know your timing, you are showing them that while you look forward to them helping you, you also respect their time. When I have the time I will bend over backward to help my current and future clients any way I can, even if it might not involve real estate.