The bulk of my job includes property views, design, delivery, set-up and pick-up… And it is a fast moving game.
But I also work with people. Yes, primarily brokers, realtors, developers…
But I also work with sellers. (They are my favorite, actually!)
And every seller has a different story.
Some stories are happy… Others are sad. Some are selling because they’re upsizing, downsizing, relocating, perhaps they’re getting divorced… Maybe it’s not their property at all. Maybe it’s their childhood home and their parents are no longer living there or no longer with them and it’s now their responsibility to oversee the sale of the property. Maybe it’s a flipper and they’ve invested everything they have and it needs to go well. Maybe it’s a developer who went way over budget with the rising cost of materials. Maybe, maybe, maybe…
Regardless of the story, it’s personal. Selling a home is personal.
An old friend shared an anonymous quote with me (perhaps someone knows the original author):
“And every day, the world will drag you by the hand, yelling, ‘This is important! And this is important! And this is important! You need to worry about this! And this! And this!
And each day, it’s up to you to yank your hand back and say, ‘No. This is what’s important.’”
So, yes, the world of real estate is competitive and fast moving. Home staging is not only mentally draining - it’s a very physical job. (Osteoarthritis in my knees and physical therapy twice a week, thank you!) Of course owning a small business is rewarding and the best, but it’s also hard. There’s contracts, deposits, late fees, rush fees, deadlines, delays, etc. I could go on!
But there’s also what’s important... And what’s important? Patience and compassion.
As the Labor Day rush finally slows, I reflect on the crazy week and the moments that were important:
A scared and stressed out seller who learned someone had broke in through the back door just after renovations were near completion.
A frustrated seller who flew across the country to oversee an exterior renovation project and the home staging process - but rain delayed any work from getting done and National Grid dug up the road hours before staging so we had to reschedule last minute.
An anxious first-time flipper who finally reached the finish line and is eager to see if all the hard work will pay off!
There are a lot of emotions involved when selling a home. And those emotions aren’t always positive. Sellers are sad, scared, stressed, frustrated, anxious…
Our role as professionals in the field is to pick and choose the moments that are important… The moments to practice patience and show compassion. I was chatting about this with a colleague and she said: “It really comes down to everyone’s intentions.” And, it’s true! Business is personal, but we need to choose when to be “all business” and when to be personal… When to be human. When to have patience and compassion. When to hit someone with that restock fee or cut a person some slack because events occurred that we’re out of their control, despite their due diligence.
You know what wasn’t important this week and brought out the business side of me:
The broker who was hit with a $50 late fee because they forgot to pay an invoice on time while traveling. (If only all our invoices, bills and responsibilities disappeared while we’re traveling! Mine certainly don’t!)
The agent who dragged their feet and realized a property could not be put on lockbox in time for staging. (Procrastination is the foundation of all disasters… And this girl requires two-weeks notice.)
The broker who opted to stage it themselves, changed their mind and was beyond disappointed and frustrated when I couldn’t squeeze them in on the calendar… (We can’t create time that simply does not exist! But imagine if I could…!)
My takeaway: Be good to those who are good to you. Practice patience and compassion because that is important.
Oh, and be fair to those who need to learn a lesson in what is fair.