Holding up the Mirror

Holding up the MirrorAfter being in a handful of homes this morning all save one, I was all the more convinced that most people absolutely do not know how to clean in preparing their homes for sale.  I found lingering odors of likely multiple cats, the smell of old grease, and uncleaned carpets.  If one doesn’t really work at keeping their carpets clean, those very carpets can fill a home with the odor of dead cells and all the other particles of whatever a human or animal has brushed across or rubbed in.  Sounds scary doesn’t it?

I spoke with a dear seller of mine today and asked she remove all the older carpets in her home so to show off the wooden floors.  “What if there are stains showing on the wood floors after the carpets come up?”  I said, “Better to have a few stains on beautiful hardwood floors that to look at old carpeting and wondering what’s underneath.”  A real reminder for me of late was having been called to a home I sold a client about four months ago to show me the wooden floors that were under several layers of linoleum and carpet.  I was absolutely amazed at the condition as well as the type of flooring that was all over the home including the kitchen with the exception of the bath.  There before me shined beautiful solid maple floors with a minimum number of stains on them.  I told the owner he hit the jackpot by having those floors because once re-finished, they will be the frosting on the cake if and when he should ever decide to sell it.  I looked at those unfinished floors and thought of the junk people are installing in their homes to replicate real wood.  The snap-in laminate flooring is for me not even a consideration unless it is of a very high grade that most people wouldn’t even bother purchasing due to cost.

Several weeks ago I had a very nice compliment paid to me regarding my office.  He walked around a bit after his business was finished and said, “I think you have likely the most beautiful real estate office I’ve visited in quite some time.”  I smiled and said, “Thank you, but wait until the exterior is restored and then you’ll see a real eye-catcher.”  Receiving compliments like that does give one an incentive to keep pressing forward with getting the exterior finished.  And yes, we really must work on giving people compliments when deserved in an uplifting and selfless way.  It truly helps to keep them diligent in their projects.

I happened to be at a meeting today where several people I’ve known for a number of years were in attendance.  Seeing them brought back not so pleasant memories of the spiteful things they did to me whenever opportunities would arise.  As many times as I tried to turn the other cheek and be as much of a gentleman as possible, they would resist every effort.  It then brought to mind a conversation I had today with my exceptionally learned friend about people who goad others in attempts to get one to lower themselves to their level.  We both agreed that people who act in such a way lack both a good education and live in a constant state of fear.  Their fears often consist of the fear of growing old, the fear of not being loved, the fear of not having enough money, and the fear of failure.  I said, “Wouldn’t it be great if we could find a magical mirror that when held before them, the real people would emerge from beneath all the layers of spurious personalities they’ve themselves created”  She laughed and said, “That would a bit too scary to watch.”  I said, “Ok. We’ll just mail it with a return postage sticker for them to send back after they’ve seen themselves in the “real” when holding up the mirror in the privacy of their own homes.”

Joe Chodur

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