You are using an outdated browser.
For a better experience, keep your browser up to date. Check here for latest versions.

What’s the first rule when it’s time to choose a real estate agent? If you’re researching online or talking to friends, you’ll usually hear that finding someone local is the highest priority. It makes a certain amount of sense. Who better to help you buy or sell a home than someone who knows and loves the area? Note the operative words, however; “knows and loves.” 

A professional who is passionate about the neighbourhood you have your eye on can give you the best possible guidance. But the importance of locality can be a bit of a misnomer, and you may be hard-pressed to find an agent who only works in a single neighbourhood. As such, you may find that a city-dwelling agent is the perfect choice to help you find your dream home in the country and vice versa! Passion, knowledge, and a dedication to superior service are the qualities that will help make your transition a success!

Localized Knowledge

It’s not where your agent lives that matters, but rather what they know. It’s critical to have a professional by your side who understands the nuances of buying or selling in a small town or rural area. Why? Every municipality is allowed to create its own set of bylaws. Regulations are often different and are particularly critical to know if you plan on building or significantly renovating a home. What else should you and your real estate agent know about rural life?

  • Most rural homes are not on sewer systems that are treated by the city. Instead, they use underground septic tanks that treat wastewater onsite. As the homeowner, you are responsible for the cost and maintenance of the system. 
  • You may not have access to city water. Rural homes often use either a well or cistern for water supply. Each has pros and cons, and you will likely need to install a disinfectant system for safety.
  • The road maintenance schedule may be vastly different from what you can expect. If a blizzard hits, you may be homebound for longer periods of time than your friends in the city.

Working with a real estate agent with local expertise goes far beyond navigating municipal regulations when buying or selling rural property. They can also give you insight into what developments may be in the works. For example, you may want to know if a giant chicken farm is scheduled to open in the field behind the house you’re considering purchasing!

Are you thinking about taking the plunge and relocating to the countryside? Here are some posts that can guide you:

Professional Connections

Even more important than what your real estate agent knows is who they know. Real estate works on a different timeline in rural areas and smaller towns. The market may be bustling in the city, where houses get snapped up left, right and centre. But things move a little slower the further you get from the suburbs. You may need to reset your expectations:

  • When looking to buy a property, you might have to do some serious searching before the right listing comes up.
  • When selling, you’ll notice that there are fewer buyers seeking to relocate than in the city. A little patience may be required before your home is sold.

During any transaction, you’ll want to work with a respected and well-connected real estate agent. But for rural properties, this network becomes even more critical. Having access to other professionals and a vast list of buyers and sellers is often the best way to enjoy a fast, seamless transaction.

Selling your existing home is often the first step in the relocation process. Here’s how to make the most of your transaction:

Questions to Ask Your Agent

How do you find a real estate professional that has the knowledge, passion, and connections you need to achieve your goals? It starts with a little background research. Your first step is to take a look at a candidate’s website. You can see what areas they cover and how much experience they have. Even more importantly, you can get a feel for their level of passion and how much service they might provide. 

Once you’ve narrowed it down, there’s nothing better than sitting down for a personal chat. Here are a few questions to ask to ensure a Realtor® is the right fit for your needs:

  • What towns and neighbourhoods do you specialize in?
  • What made you choose those areas?
  • How many transactions have you handled in the area I’m considering buying or selling in?
  • What bylaws or regulations should I be aware of in my location?
  • What types of properties are available in the area I want to buy?
  • What is your plan for marketing my rural home if I decide to sell?

Choosing your real estate agent may be a challenging task, but it is well worth the time to get it right. With the right expert by your side, you could be packing your bags for your new home before you know it!

At West Ottawa Real Estate, we are passionate about Ottawa and all the small, rural communities west of Kanata. Do you want to know more about buying or selling in those areas? We are just a phone call or email away. Feel free to reach out at or call 613-690-5993 to get started.