A-glow with Good

Without a doubt, it was one of those one-armed wallpaper hanger days where I had to stop and think if I were coming or going.  Of course the higher temperatures didn’t help matters when discovering I was breaking into a sweat on occasion.

I think what created a bottle-neck, was my having attended our monthly MLS meeting, and then finding it not beginning on time, and then ending all that much later.  I couldn’t believe I was there for well over two hours. They had two different guest speakers giving presentations which shouldn’t have been scheduled simply because of it making our meeting far too long, and on top of it all, there was a broker’s meeting afterwards which soaked up all the more time.

Knowing I had an 11:00 am appointment at the office, but somewhere else to be before that, I think I was running instead of walking back to my office.  When I made it back, the phone was ringing, and it just happened to be the contractor I was to meet before my appointment, so I dashed out to meet him at a property.  Thankfully, I did get back to my office just as my 11:00 am appointment arrived, and the first comment out of his mouth was, “You look a little stressed today.”  That was the beginning, and then later the ending of my day.

Fortunately I was able to get emails and phone calls returned before my noon appointment arrived, and while working with that gentleman, another “immediate need” call came in.  I jotted now a few notes and then asked if I could give him a call back in a few.  Right after my noon appointment left, I returned his call.

If there was only one truly productive thing I did today, it was my having created a match-up between a buyer and seller, and glad for it because there seem to be all the more occasions arising where there isn’t that warm and fuzzy feeling from both sides which makes it all the harder to have a “soft landing” at closing.

I did speak to one of the property managers who seems to be adding all the more clients and properties to the list of those they manage.  I shook my head and said, “I remember too well when our office had over 200 units under management which was something I’d never want to be involved with again.”  I went on to say how the dynamics have changed all the more to where it’s sometimes a crap shoot when wondering if you’ve picked a good tenant, or end up fighting with one on a monthly basis over rules being broken and/or rent not being paid.

If there was one thing I learned from property management, was that if you give someone an inch, they’ll take a mile, so it’s just best to have hard and fast rules and stick to them.  I fully understand a genuine crisis, but it had better be a valid one, or that too ends up being one more reason for a more sooner than later permanent “sayonara”.

I had a late appointment with a buyer at a home he recently purchased, and wanted his father to see what he’ll soon call home.  We were there quite a while, and everything seemed to his father’s satisfaction which didn’t surprise me.  I did congratulate his father for raising one of the nicest young men I’ve run across in some time.  Of course he insisted I didn’t know his dark side, but we all have dark sides don’t we?

While I was taking a short break around mid-afternoon, a familiar client walked in whom I hadn’t seen or talked to in at least five years.  He said he was in the area, so decided to stop and see how life has been treating me.

After bringing each other up to speed on current events, he brought up the subject of a home I sold him over 20 years ago which was more than a fixer-upper.  At the time, he was looking for a winter project, and as chance would have it, I listed a real “beater” the day before.  I showed it to him and his wife, and wouldn’t you know it, they bought it.

What started out as a fixer-upper, turned into a gut job where all the lathe and plaster, all floor coverings, and even some interior walls were removed.  When I stopped to see how he was doing at the time, I actually walked into shell, and oh was he getting hot over what he believed to be his living nightmare project.

When we closed on it, there was a garage and house full of left-over junk from an exiting tenant, monster trees to be taken down, an old garage to be scraped off, yards of broken and deteriorated concrete to be removed and re-poured, a new roof installed, and windows and doors to be replaced, not to mention a new build-out of bathroom and kitchen, along with a new garage.

By the time he was finished, he had at least twice as much money in it than he’d planned, and swore he’d never ever get his money back.  Well, I was reminded again today that his nightmare turned into a pleasant real-life dream come true because every tenant he’s had living there loved it to the point of staying longer than normal, and each and every one of them speaking about how much they liked every day they lived there.

Today he said, “I truly believe there was so much abuse done to that home and its grounds, that whatever counter-balancing force there is in the universe, came back to me as well as every tenant that’s lived there.”  I’m beginning to believe there are long used and abused homes that’ve undergone tedious transformations and now a-glow with a vibrating good.

Tonight’s one-liner is:  Happiness is a mystery and should never be rationalized.

Joe Chodur

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