Caveat to All Buyers

Alas the wind stopped blowing which allowed an absolutely beautiful day to unfold here in North Iowa.  I was keen on spending as much time outdoors just so to savor as many moments possible.

I had few things to do at the office early this morning before heading off to my first little project of the day.  When I pulled up, I happened to notice something strange-looking attached to the handle of my front door.  As I drew closer, I figured it was someone trying to be smart, so I removed it and threw it in the dumpster.

Since I have an all-time online security system, that little prank gave me cause to investigate.  Well, in the early evening hours, I discovered there were two women involved in that little episode.  One of them was the scout to make sure no one was watching while the other did the attaching.  What was all the more disturbing, was seeing the woman who’d performed that act, taking a photo of it with her cell phone and then texting it to likely her third accomplice.

Unfortunately, those two women didn’t realize their actions were being captured and saved in the cloud.  I did email the security service I use and asked them to hard file the exact time frame it took place for future reference.  I’ll never in a million years understand what must go thru the minds of people who carry out such childish pranks.  And when looking at the age of those two, I’d say they should’ve learned a great many years ago what’s appropriate, and what’s not.

I received an email today from a recent transplant to North Iowa who was asking my opinion on costs of new construction, along with questioning what our market conditions are if he’d decide to buy something and fix it up to his liking.

My caveat to all buyers, is to make sure they’re planning on being here for at least five to seven years because our market doesn’t move as drastically as others do–especially in fast growing metro areas.  I couldn’t help but add that I’ve just recently seen some spiking in a number of our sales, which is reminiscent of what happened prior to the financial crisis of 2008.

I sure don’t want to see that happen again because there were far too many people who were financially burned when that crash hit.  The number of foreclosures were staggering, and I couldn’t wait until they stopped, but unfortunately we’re still not over it even after 11 years.  There’s a foreclosure coming up that was purchased back in those times, and for sure those sellers are deeply under water.

What I did learn just recently, is that the banks are now filing deficiency judgements against those sellers who lost their homes in sheriff sales.  One particular gentleman recently told me how many more thousands he had to pay long after his house was sold via sheriff’s auction which happened to sell at a much lower price than what he owed the bank.  Ouch!

While working in the garden today, I discovered a number of baby red oak, white oak, and sugar maple seedlings sprouting.  I’m going to save as many as I can and plant them in a few areas in need of hardwood trees.  Yes, it’ll take them years before they’re of any noticeable size, but we all have to start somewhere.  An old gent once told me that there’s an old Chinese saying that goes, “The best day to plant a tree is any day.”

This year has been particularly noticeable how much slower trees, flowers and bushes are growing in the lowlands.  Last winter’s deep frost must’ve really set them back to where I’ve seen peonies in full bloom in the high areas, and others barely starting their flower heads in the low districts.  I’ve really noticed how much slower the Hackberry trees are filling out this season.  Again, I think it’s because of our super-bitter winter and overly-cool Spring.

Once again I was reminded today how quickly gutters and downspouts get plugged.  It’s amazing how they can get filled with dead leaves and small twigs when not being a bit close to tall trees.  Our winds sure have the ability to carry matter great distances.

I’d been forgetting to mention a showing I had some weeks ago where the gentleman whom I was showing the home to, was walking with one of those highly sought-after willow canes.  He was quite surprised I knew what it was, but good enough to tell me how he came by it.  He said it was a gift from his daughter, and at the time he thought it was just something to look at until several years later when finally realizing he needed it. I’m sure everywhere he goes, that cane becomes his conversation starter.

Please take some time tomorrow to visit the graves of those who’ve touched your lives in positive ways. It may sound corny, but I’m of the belief they’re still watching over us in quiet ways. You can be sure I’ll be visiting a few cemeteries tomorrow where I’ll be paying my own soulful respects.

Tonight’s one-liner is:  The boundaries which divide Life and Death are at best shadowy and vague.

Joe Chodur

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