Thursday, August 8, 2013
Selling Our Own Home
A Lesson In Empathy
Every real estate agent needs experience selling their own home, every few years, so they don't loose the empathy of what sellers go through during the course of the listing period!
Oyster Bay ~ Naples, Florida
Last autumn Chip & I watched the values in our neighborhood begin to rise for the first time in many years---at one point, The Royal Harbor area single family home inventory had over a 9 year absorption rate!! We considered putting our home on the market then, striking while the iron was hot, but second guessed ourselves and put our home on the market after all our holiday guests left town, decorations were down, and the 2013 season was in full swing. We kept it on the market during the peak 4 months of the Naples selling season--and like most sellers, we experienced living in a "glass house"...Beds made, dishes done, lights on, fresh flowers, music playing, windows sparkling...uh, we even buried a St. Joseph statue in the front yard...[my mom insisted!] It is actually very nice living in a 'show ready' house--makes coming home from work so enjoyable, until we get ready to cook and I freak out because, "Do you know how many times I've polished the granite this week?"...or, "I'm in the mood for fish, but but we can't have that smell in the house in case someone wants to look tomorrow morning!" Needless to say, we are eating out more often than ever--ha ha!
I did open houses every Sunday from mid January till the end of May--I can certainly see why people hire real estate agents: A BIG reason: (in addition to the obvious), you don't have to be there to hear someone say something negative about the home you love! Of course, it is always nice hearing the good stuff--and mostly all the comments have been so favorable...I respond similarly to the same objections that all sellers react to, and when I suggest a price adjustment to Chip, I am met with very familiar resistance. All the local press keeps talking about a diminished inventory, prices going up, and I keep asking myself, "Why isn't my house selling?" I've had lengthy conversations with a colleague who is a local appraiser and she keeps telling me we are right on the money--Many real estate agents are telling me I'm under priced! [The neighbors definitely think we are]! ~We've already purchased a condo that we are renovating, and as that project nears completion the excitement of our new place is squelched a little by the fact that we can't move in till Jewel Box sells. We go over to the new condo almost every night--it's right around the corner from our home [yes, we LOVE our neighborhood]--we watch the sunset or go to see what progress has been made. We are your typical sellers...and having our home on the market has been a reminder of what our customers go through--a good lesson that I think all agents need to experience somewhat regularly in order to keep the memory fresh in their minds when responding to a seller's demands and frustrations...
Anyway, we decided to take it off the market to do a little bit of summer traveling. It is now back in MLS---and typically this is a slow time of year, but there are a lot of buyers in town right now. There's approximately a 6 month supply of homes on the market in our community, so we are feeling very optimistic! I've got an open house this coming Sunday, and we've already had 4 showings this week!Whoo hoo!
Thanks for letting me share this personal experience as well as my lesson in empathy! Oh, and by the way, if you know someone looking for a great buy in Naples Florida, call me---there's a motivated seller on Jewel Box Avenue! 239-250-4370
Make it a great day,
The Naples Real Estate Blogger