The Evolution Of Whitefish

Whitefish, Montana has a proud timber and railroad history. From the earliest indigenous residents who fished for whitefish in the lake, the name “Whitefish” evolved. But it was a stumptown first. Rich in forest land, the timber industry boomed in the late 1880s, leaving behind large stumps, some in the middle of the roads, thus the nickname Stumptown!

The town site became official in 1903 when the Great Northern Railway found it provided an easier route to British Columbia. But according to the old timers, the stumps remained in the middle of town clear into the 1930’s. In the years that followed, a few adventurous folk came for a new activity…skiing.

The upper reaches of Hellroaring Mountain, just north of town, were ideal for skiing down the open slopes into the Hellroaring Basin. The first ski lift was built in 1947 and now Whitefish Mountain Ski Resort offers more than 3000 skiable acres and 85 marked runs that include snowboarding, Nordic trails, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. Glacier Sotheby’s International Realty offers a quality collection of world-class real estate properties to ski resort and mountain enthusiasts. Understanding that each property has its own personality and appeal, we excel at matching buyers with a home as unique as they are. Whether you are seeking a secluded ski-in/ski-out home or a cozy condo retreat allowing for quick slope-side access, our team of experienced real estate professionals can guide you to the perfect property to fit your lifestyle.

From this northern town of 5000 people, stunning views of the Bob Marshall Wilderness, Glacier National Park, Whitefish Mountains and the pristine waters of Whitefish Lake are a daily delight for residents and visitors. A myriad of winter and summer activities abound for every age and ability.

Whether skiing, skating, boating or shopping, Whitefish is a place where life slows down to the speed of a paddle and the Rocky Mountain lifestyle provides enduring inspiration. With natural surroundings as part of the décor, Whitefish offers a lifestyle with a view!

Photo From Exclusive Listing:

669 Delrey Road Whitefish, MT $2,700,000 Kelly Laabs

Bigfork, MT – “Where Flathead Lake Begins”

Bigfork Village is nestled between two rivers at the north end of Flathead Lake, the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi. Endless recreational opportunities are waiting on 191 square miles of sparkling waters, hundreds of hiking trails with abundant wildlife along tree-lined shores. A collection of waterfront properties around Flathead Lake offer a diverse lifestyle of riverfront and lakefront living. Often called “the banana belt” of Montana, the East Shore’s mild climate is ideal for growing the famous Flathead sweet cherries savored all over the world.

Bigfork’s story began over 100 years ago as a logging and farming community. The thick timber provided surrounding sawmills with lumber that produced over 600,000 railroad ties per year. From the hardworking and entrepreneurial spirit of common folks, Bigfork still remains the unique village that it was born to be and a wonderful place to own a home.

A stroll though Bigfork reveals a vibrant arts culture. Along Electric Avenue, so named as the first street to receive electricity from the powerhouse that still operates, world class art galleries, artists-in-residence, and live theatre await. World renowned, the Bigfork Playhouse celebrates 57 years of live and professional theater, heralding audiences from around the globe. An evening at the theatre, preceded by a gourmet meal from one of Bigfork’s fine restaurants, is a treat to be remembered.

Minutes from Bigfork is Eagle Bend championship golf course. Glacier Sotheby’s International Realty offers a large collection of golf homes within our Western Montana network. Each property offers a world-class retreat and features club and private community amenities.

Just to the east rises the mighty Swan Mountains with hiking trails, Jewel Basin, and glacier fed lakes. Along the Swan River, much of the ruggedness that defines Montana can be found with a tremendous variety of game and a diverse ecology. The angler, hunter, hiker or nature lover will find a home in the Swan Valley.

4 Cs of Home Staging–Clutter, Clean, Competition and Change.

Sellers, you are getting ready to put your home on the market. Before your Realtor comes over to list it, there are steps you can take to stage it for maximum buyer appeal. I have talked with home sellers who insist that the “buyer needs to know that my home is lived in and how I live. I’m not changing anything.” I going to tell you right now–that is wrong thinking. The buyer needs to imagine themselves in your home and that requires your help. There are thousands of tips on home staging but I’m going to boil it down to just a four steps with some stellar examples of each.

The 4 Cs of Home Staging:

Clutter, Clean, Competition and Change.

Clutter is most important and that means inside, outside, in every corner, in every drawer and especially each closet. Opening a closet and having your possessions spill out ala “Fibber McGee’s Closet” will definitely turn off a potential buyer. That may mean putting things in storage while your home is on the market. My mother in law used to say that three moves are as good as a fire. What she meant was after moving three times, you have pared your things down to the bone. Well, don’t wait until you move. De-clutter now before your home is listed.

Potential buyers don’t want to know anything about you. They want to imagine themselves in the home you are selling. If you have nick knacks, put them away. If you have family photos or religious symbols, put them away. Collections, you got it, put them away. Now does that mean that a charming collection of vintage suitcases or a beautiful rug can’t work? They can, but use them to stage and define the space. For instance, if your home is going to be viewed empty, a lovely area rug can define the space. A stack of vintage suitcases or an antique table with a single interesting book or vase of flowers atop it can be inviting. If you’re still living in your home, the same concept applies. The important thing to remember is: Take “your personal” out of it. Let the potential buyer imagine themselves in your space. This also means, putting rooms back to their original intent. Make sure each room has its intentionally defined purpose. If you are using the dining room for an office, put it back to a dining room.

Clean, clean and clean again. Corners, drawers, closets and yes, under the bed should be squeaky clean. That’s the most difficult part of home staging and keeping the home viewing ready. The cleaning is constant–no dirty dishes in the sink, laundry folded and put away, outside landscaping trim and clear of leaves and branches and windows clean. If you have pets, make sure fur is vacuumed daily and litter box is out of sight.

Competition.  There are a growing number of buyers in the market and your home is just one of many that the potential buyer will view. According to studies conducted by the National Association of Realtors, over 82% of all home buyers begin their search online. With that kind of competition, yours has to be staged right from the start. Whether you do a little staging or a major upheaval, make the changes that highlight the best features of each room. You originally bought the home for good reason and so will a potential buyer if you stage it correctly.

Change. The home selling process is a change and there is no way of getting around it. You’re changing, the potential buyer is changing and your thinking must change as well. Potential buyers are extremely judgmental and you can’t blame them. It may be the largest investment they may ever made in their lives and probably the largest source of debt, too. Selling a home is an educated chance by the Realtor, too. A good agent will try to find the perfect fit you and a potential buyer. They will interview them, find out their needs and guide them toward appropriate properties. In the end it is a change for everyone and you only get one chance to make a first impression. So make it good and make it sell.