Not a Second Thought about the many Hours

In spite of these continued hot days, I’m now noticing the maple trees starting to turn, but for some reason they’re not showing off their colors as well as they normally do, and causing me to wonder if these higher than normal temps have something to do with it. I think if everyone would pay closer attention to these abnormalities in nature, they’d come to the conclusion that we absolutely have to slow down this global warming.

I had to be at office earlier this morning, just so I would be ready for a seller when he arrived to sign the transfer documents on his home which we are closing on tomorrow morning. As soon as he arrived, I proceeded to go over his closing documents and then those transferring his home to the buyer. Once he understood everything he was about to sign, I handed him a pen and off we went with that small stack. Three of the docs required a Notary, so I stamped and signed them right afterwards. Most in our community have no idea that I’m a Notary Public, and have been one shortly after getting my real estate license, and the main reason for it, was because a broker I went to work for, wasn’t a Notary Public. I have no idea who she must’ve used before I started there.

Shortly after the seller left, the closing agent for today’s closing stopped by to drop off checks and pick up the transfer documents. We went over them just to make sure they met his satisfaction before heading out with them. Since he’s a commercial loan officer for First Security Bank which has its home office in Charles City, I couldn’t help asking, “Why hasn’t your bank opened a branch office here in Mason City?” He went on to say it’s been talked about a number of times, but for whatever reason, they’ve nixed the idea. Being the promoter I am, I went on to tell him about a prime piece of real estate here in our City which would make a great location for a new branch. I couldn’t help teasing him a little by saying, “Since you have a branch in Manly and Nora Springs, there’s no reason for you not to have one here.” If they did open a branch at that location, I would likely move one of my accounts there.

First Security Bank of Charles City has been family owned for generations, and any time I’ve had real estate dealings with them, they’ve all been good. Now that more in our general public are moving away from the corporate National banks, there’s no question they’d be doing some good business here. Look how Clear Lake Bank and Trust has eaten into the market share of banking in our City, and instead of having only one branch here, they’ve got two. It was a stroke of luck they were able to purchase the old Community National Bank in our Downtown and re-open it as their Downtown office. Because they inherited Community National’s customers, they really didn’t have to do much to build up a customer base because it was already there. The Hewitt family which owns Clear Lake Bank and Trust has had a very good run these past ten years.

Of course most know that O.J. Thompson is the owner of First Citizen’s Bank, and now that he’s retired, his daughter is now its president. It was a smart move on his part when he decided to move their charter from Charles City to Mason City, and then open their new home office in the old Iowa Kemper Insurance building which they’ve now remodeled for the second time since they move into it. As chance would have it, just yesterday I saw him driving an antique Ford down Taft Ave., and looking like he had a lady friend in the passenger seat. Until yesterday, I had no idea he owned such a vehicle. I don’t think it was a Model T, but possibly a Model A Ford.

With all of this re-financing going on, as well as the surge of home buying in our area, the balance sheets of our banks and credit unions must be looking pretty darned good. As most bankers know, once you get a new customer signed up, that’s when the cross-selling starts, which is why we see all the advertisements in our local rags. I clearly remember the financial crisis of 2008, and if we get hit again, the banks will be struggling once more, and especially if they’re weighted down with in-house loans.

Since I was in need of a few items, I stopped at a groceteria on my way back to office, and wouldn’t you know, I ran into a friend of mine who I was thinking about just this morning. We had a nice “aisle” chat and glad we crossed paths. I was happy to hear all has been well on her side of the fence, and of course we both had to make mention of these un-naturally hot days, and to think it’s the last day of September.

I’ve already got appointments lined up for this coming week, which means it’ll likely be another busy month for real estate sales. For sure I’m not complaining because last year was the most toxic I’d had in more than a decade. The farther I get away from 2020’s disappointments with certain buyers and sellers, the more likely I’ll have them pushed far to the back of my mind. To this day, I guarantee you they’ve not had a second thought about the many hours of my time I wasted on them. When not being given an explanation for cutting me off, were distinct signs of flawed characters. I learned many lessons this past year, which have enabled me to adjust to such trends which has helped me immensely since the beginning of 2021. There’s no question we all must acclimate ourselves to the ways of today’s world.

Before heading home, I proudly placed a sold sign out at the home I sold last week which was another “big dog” sale for me this year. It just happened to be one of those times when seeing a new listing coming on, and right away a buyer’s name coming to mind. Any way a person looks at it, that matching up of my buyers to that home was truly meant to be. Because they’re the most kind and thoughtful people you’d ever want to meet, I couldn’t have wished for the better.

Tonight’s One-liner is: A productive employee who is kept busy working at his or her job, is far more likely to be happy at that job and less likely to be looking for employment elsewhere.

Joe Chodur

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