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Louis Price, a REALTOR® with Coldwell Banker in New Buffalo, Mich., has seen his business gravitate toward second homes over the last several years. Serving the Lake Michigan area, his client base trends toward second-home seekers from Chicago who are looking for homes by the lake.

That’s why when Price first learned about the Resort and Second-Home Property Specialist (RSPS) certification offered by the National Association of REALTORS®, he knew he needed to get it.

“When I found out about the certification, I thought, ‘the more knowledge I can get about second homes and resorts, the better off I’ll be, and the better I can serve my clients,'” says Price.

During his class, he learned about the attitudes of second-home buyers, and the differences between those looking for investment properties and those looking to get away and relax.

“It really brought me up to date on the thought process they go through and helped me better figure out how to deal with their needs,” says Price.

With a better understanding of their mindset, Price believes he has better credibility with clients. Many are impressed that he’s furthering his knowledge and like that he’s an expert in the area.

“I think it carries extra weight with buyers and sellers, but it also carries extra weight with other real estate professionals, because they know I have the experience in resorts and second homes, so if they bring me an offer, or I bring them an offer, they know I’m aware of what’s going on in the market,” says Price. “There’s a respect there.”

A REALTOR® since 1983 and a multimillion-dollar producer many times over, Price feels it’s important to always improve his knowledge base. With less than 1 percent of real estate professionals having earned the designation nationally, Price often champions the certification, telling other agents why they should follow his lead.

As a member of the National Resort and Second Home Real Estate Committee, his responsibilities include staying up to date and protecting the interests of property owners and real estate professionals when it comes to second homes and resort properties.

“The big question from buyers is, ‘Will I be able to rent this house out?’ Some people don’t want to live in a rental community, so having that knowledge and knowing what different associations are doing is important for success,” says Price.

While he’s seen an increase in business lately, Price feels that his RSPS certification makes him a preferred choice for those looking for second homes and resort properties.

“The second home and resort business has been on an upswing the last couple years,” concludes Price. “Prices are going up a bit, but it’s also been a very good time for buyers.”

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