My fiance and I arrived in Vancouver from England with our suitcases and our large shaggy dog in January 2006, and by March we had bought our dream home in the heart of the city. How did we achieve this so quickly in a challenging sellers market? The answer? by having friends with the right connections and the right connection in this context happened to be one of the citys top realtors, a lovely smart young lady, Sayo Nickerson. Coming from the UK we were unfamiliar with the intricacies of buying and selling realtors, let alone the alarming phenomenon of bidding for property. It seemed an insurmountable task to come to grips with this large multicultural city with its distinct neighbourhoods. But to our huge relief we quickly realised that Sayo was someone we could trust completely, and who knew just how to guide us, calmly and with humour, through this bewildering property market, with leaky condo, leasehold and strata pitfalls galore. The house we finally bought was one that we initially had discounted. But with Sayo’s astute insight, we viewed it again and our perspective rapidly changed. We owe her such a huge debt of gratitude and we are thankful everyday that we landed the perfect house in the perfect neighbourhood that caters to all our particular needs. And we know for a fact that it was Sayo’s special X-factor that secured us this perfect home. The seller, a successful architect, loved the house and at the eleventh hour was in a real dilemma as to whether to sell or keep it as a rental property, to move back to on retirement. It is a great testament to Sayo’s negotiation style that this considerable obstacle was overcome. The seller, whom we consequently got to know well, was so impressed by her relaxed professional manner and her calm reasoning that he decided to accept her sensible offer. He confided in us at a later date that he wished he had appointed her as his selling realtor and said he would be sure to hire her for his future property sales…praise indeed! Thank you Sayo for being at the top of your game!