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Robin Vilter’s Ultimate Guide to Selling Your Home in Glen Arbor

Robin Vilter’s Ultimate Guide to Selling Your Home in Glen Arbor

If you own a luxury home in the natural wonderland of Glen Arbor and are planning to sell it soon, there are several steps to take to arrive at a successful sale. Glen Arbor is nestled between Sleeping Bear Bay on Lake Michigan and Glen Lake, which makes it extremely popular as a vacation destination as well as with the approximately 900 people who are year-round residents.

Waterfront property is particularly attractive to people looking to get in on the incredible Glen Arbor lifestyle, whether it’s for a primary residence or to serve as a vacation home. The homes along Sleeping Bear Bay open up on a wide sandy beach, and the homes along Glen Lake offer access to boating, swimming, and fishing.

As wonderful as waterfront homes are, there are many things to know about selling them. A successful sale can result in a tidy profit, but making mistakes during the process can result in setbacks that can cost you both time and money. By being well-prepared and following these home-selling tips, you’ll be able to navigate the process with few, if any, obstacles.

Partner with an experienced agent

To start the process off on the right foot, it’s important to hire a real estate agent who is experienced in selling waterfront properties like Robin Vilter. The best agents will be well-versed in selling these luxury properties, such as pricing, making disclosures, offering great advice for preparing your home for sale, and using smart marketing techniques. Ultimately, an experienced agent knows how to get top dollar for your Glen Arbor, MI real estate while working toward a quick sale. Not all real estate agents have experience selling waterfront properties, so be sure to do your research and have prospective agents explain their track record of success in handling transactions for waterfront homes. Hiring the wrong agent can set you back from the start of the process.

Price it right

It’s important to determine a fair market value of a home, whether it’s a waterfront home, a home with a water view but no direct access, or a home in this vibrant community that is near the water. Waterfront homes are almost always worth more money than homes that are not directly on the water. The current median price of Glen Arbor homes is about $700,000. Not surprisingly, homes on the waterfront or with a nice water view can stretch into the seven figures.

A knowledgeable agent knows how to properly price a home based on recent sales of comparable homes as well as their experience in the market. The key is to avoid setting it too high, which could cause it to sit on the market too long and lead buyers to think there could be a problem with it, or set it too low and leave potentially thousands of dollars on the table. One of the best ways for your agent to set a competitive price is to run a comparative market analysis (CMA), which will compare your home with similar houses that have sold in recent months and are currently on the market.

Market the unique lifestyle

For any home for sale in Glen Arbor, a smart real estate agent will market the incredible lifestyle that comes with living near the beaches, bays, dunes, and lakes in the area, as well as the quaint downtown. For a waterfront home, the key is to sell the image of living right on the water, whether it’s Lake Michigan or Glen Lake. Highlight the incredible views from the home itself as well as from the nearby beach or boat dock, plus all the perks, such as direct access to the water and the many recreational opportunities available.

When putting together an online listing, include plenty of professionally taken photos that highlight each room and all the features of the home, as well as water views from each room. Include plenty of shots of the exterior and its features, as well as a drone shot or two that shows the home’s proximity to the water. If buyers are intrigued by what they see online, they’ll be sure to schedule a private showing. A sharp real estate agent who has been working in the market for several years will also know how to find buyers who have the financial means and desire to buy waterfront properties.

Understand waterfront property rights

Another important factor in selling Glen Arbor, MI real estate is to understand the rights that will convey to the new owner, including water access, the location of your property lines, and what changes can be made to the property, such as adding a boat dock or seawall. All federal, state, and local laws must be followed.


Since waterfront homes are more susceptible to the effects of storms, you should disclose any history of damage from flooding or high wind. You should also inform prospective buyers how much they should expect to pay for flood insurance.

Get an inspection

When selling waterfront property, it’s smart to have the home inspected before listing it to identify any potential problems that could arise and derail a sale, costing you valuable time. An inspection can also cover exterior features such as a dock and retaining wall. Any problems should be fixed before listing the home.

Stage the waterfront

Just as you will declutter, clean, and stage the interior of your home, you should do the same to the exterior. This will add value and give buyers that “wow” factor they’re looking for while shopping for a dream home. Stain the dock and deck, buy new outdoor furniture, and clean up along the waterline. Trim any trees or bushes that block any part of the view, which is your strongest selling point.

Work with the best

These are the major home-selling tips when listing your Glen Arbor home. Find out more when you partner with Robin Vilter for the best client services in the luxury market.

Robin Vilter

Robin Vilter


About the Author

I was raised in Cincinnati but always summered on the lake in Leland. Being able to spend my summers up here was such a gift. Starting at the age of twelve we were able to drive the boat into town or to the yacht club or to a friend's house. My days were jam-packed. I would wake up and teach sailing school at the Leland Yacht Club from nine to one, then take a nap on the dock or the beach, shower, then drive into Leland in the late afternoon where I had a job as a hostess. My sisters and I did this every summer and when we had a driver's license we had more options for employment. I started teaching sailing school in Omena and working at night waiting tables at The Cove in Leland. We stashed away thousands of dollars every summer. Yes, we worked our tails off, but it really did not seem like it since we were enjoying all the beauty of Leelanau at the same time.

I attended Miami University in Ohio and chose creative writing since that was my easiest subject. I’ve not yet written a novel, but have started about five. After graduation, I bought the Riverside Inn with my mother and my sister. I later sold my shares when I realized that being a single parent and working late nights did not pair well with my mental health. It took a decade to raise my kids and go through two divorces.

I Earned My Real Estate License in 2016

By that point, I had bought and sold houses seven times over the course of twelve years. I had to be a real estate expert by then, right? The simple truth is I love real estate! Why did I even bother going to college? I felt like I should have been doing this since I was eighteen. What I love most about real estate is establishing great relationships. Each new client is a wonderful surprise. We live in such a small community, yet I get to meet new people all the time and usually, they turn out to be great friends. The other thing I love is the variety. Every house is different, every client is different, and it all comes with its own unique challenges.
I decided to separate from Coldwell Banker in 2021. Real estate boomed in 2020 and 2021. I managed a huge amount of volume pretty much by myself. Coldwell offered the power of a big brand, but I figured I could somehow make up for that. I took a big leap and joined Five Star Real Estate. The marketing group with Five Star encouraged me to build on my familiarity with the area. Many of the residents have heard of me in some way shape or form and I could build on my good reputation.
I chose Robin Vilter Group as the name of my business. We chose the robin bird as the logo for my name but also because of the symbolism. The robin is Michigan's state bird. It symbolizes hope, renewal, rebirth, new beginnings, and new projects, and is a sign of good things to come.

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Whether you are an experienced investor or a first-time buyer, our team can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse our website or let us guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing us to set up an appointment today.