A few weeks, Intero CEO Gino Blefari posted an article on the Intero Insider blog entitled “Need directions? Ask a Realtor.” In this post, Gino describes the vast knowledge many Realtors have to share regarding the local communities we serve. He goes on to say:

I’m always amazed at the amount of local community knowledge a typical Realtor has. If you need to know about the local preschool situation, where to get the best cup of coffee within earshot of a specific address, where to get free Internet while you enjoy a hot beverage or quick lunch, and where the best morning bun in town is served, ask a Realtor. Seriously.

But many times you wouldn’t know this as a home buyer or seller while out shopping for a Realtor. It seems that

many agents’ marketing materials don’t seem to get this point across – that not only is this agent a master at closing sales in a particular neighborhood or area, he’s also an expert at all things local. He knows the right plumbers, contractors, inspectors, landscapers, cleaning services, florists, and interior decorators. You name it.

I think it’s time agents get the recognition they deserve as neighborhood connoisseurs, specialists, experts. Sure, you want an agent with an impeccable track record of selling houses in your area or area of interest. You want a master negotiator, a well respected and well connected professional. But you also want someone who’s going to be able to either tell you exactly what it’s like to live somewhere, how close life’s essentials are, and so forth or connect you directly with the people who can answer those questions.

I personally couldn’t agree more with Gino’s emphasis on the importance of being able to share this local expertise with clients. Whether it’s regarding the local schools, finding a reliable contractor, or getting recommendations on the best restaurants in town, I pride myself in being able to assist my clients, friends, and neighbors with all of these things. Now, I’ve partnered with AmericanTowns (a wonderful site to find and share local events, things to do, and more), serving as their Los Altos Real Estate Expert and contributing to the Los Altos Answer Book. Through the Answer Book, I will be sharing my knowledge about our community with interested folks across the globe, covering various topics concerning our community and the resources, businesses, programs, and people that make it unique.