The Stink of Laziness

As I was heading to the office this morning, I noticed the temperature on the marquis at First Citizens Bank, and not a bit happy to see it in the low 20’s, and of course we also had to deal with that noticeably cold wind coming out of the north, but it’s winter, and what else are we to expect?

I finally received back in an email today, a radical price reduction on The Lady Bug Restaurant in Clear Lake which is located at 1714 – 7th Ave. North, which happens to be that main street that runs somewhat parallel with Hwy 122. We now have it priced at $129,900 which as far as I’m concerned, is a steal of a deal.

When seeing what properties around it recently sold for, I’d say it should pique the interest of more than one of North Iowa’s savvy buy-and-hold investors. What makes it valuable, is the near full acre of land that goes with it, and the zoning being “Highway Commercial”. I’d say that’s a green light for anyone wanting to do an expansion of that existing business, or scrape it off and build anew. We did have one offer on it recently, but it wasn’t even close to what the seller needs to clear expenses.

With all the new build-outs going on over there, along with a friendly city administration to work with, I’d say just about anything built on that site would be a money-maker. It’s unfortunate that all the more hometown commerce is rapidly growing in Clear Lake, and the rest of us in Mason City are left struggling to fill our storefronts. It has noticeably become the “tale of two cities” when comparing the successes and failures of Mason City and Clear Lake over these past 30 years. What really did happen?

Late this morning I received a call from a client who owns rentals here in Mason City, and was shocked when he told me about some issues he’s had with one in which he recently evicted a very naughty monkey tenant and his lollipop girlfriend.

Some of the things he said the tenant did, almost had me speechless. Just to highlight a few, there was a horrible lingering odor in the garage, and when he went to move a heavy plastic garbage can with its lid tightly fastened, after opening it, he nearly dropped to his knees from the smell of slimy rotten meat that must’ve been in it for weeks, or possibly even months.

When he called a plumber to replace a drain in the bathtub, the plumber asked him to come down to the basement so to show him a disgustingly long wadded glob of hair the size of a dead rat. To make matters worse, the kitchen drain line was also plugged by something that looked like a wet bundle of used steel wool, but in reality, it was also hair. And while fixing the kitchen sink drain, two metal forks and a knife were pulled out its line that he said looked like they’d been there for months.

I truly empathized with him, but also warned him again regarding these times where some tenants have this crazy mentality that they have the license to do absolutely anything they want to homes owned by others. I stressed once again how normal wear and tear does not include filth, and when showing rentals, I make sure to tell prospective tenants that if they’re chosen as tenants, they will be charged if there’s a mess to clean up. For the strangest of reasons, I’m of the belief that all the many are convinced that cleaning is below their stations in life. Really? Since when does personal hygiene and keeping ones living quarters cleaned on a regular basis have anything to do with “station”? I can still hear my dear mother saying at appropriate times, “There’s one smell I’ll never grow used to, and that’s the stink of laziness.”

One of my out-of-State clients called to tell me he’s going to be listing his deceased mother’s home in about a month. I was happy to get the call because I’d been wondering how he’s been doing with her estate. If that home is priced right, there’s no question it’ll sell quickly because of it being a very large ranch with a double attached garage. I walked thru it some months ago, and was delightfully shocked by the size of it.

I’m having a morning open house tomorrow at 415 – 1st St. SE which will be from 10:00 – Noon. I normally don’t have morning open houses, but after seeing several other Realtors having them at that time tomorrow, I figured I might as well join the crowd. If ever there were a true family home on the market here in Mason City, I’d say it fits all the criteria. Perhaps the buyers we’ve been waiting for will finally arrive.

After hearing a litany of problems from the mouths of others today, I took some soulful time-out before heading home by walking back to my piano and running thru some Christmas songs. After about a half hour of playing, I felt much better about the day as a whole, which then brought to mind William Congreve’s quote, “Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak.” As far as I’m concerned, listening to music coming from an instrument at hand, is far more soothing.

Tonight’s one-liner is: When someone is hurting, dare to help them heal.

Related Property:
1714 – 7th Ave. North Clear Lake 415 1st St. SE Mason City
Joe Chodur

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