Fairytales and Real Estate
It’s about that time where the costumes come out and people are dressed up as all sorts of creatures and other beings. Halloween is fun but sometimes you encounter real life characters. If you are in a business where you have customers or clients, you will probably relate to some, if not all, of these comparisons. I had a client who compared herself to Goldilocks so when I started thinking about it, I realized that there are a lot of correlations between real estate and fairy tales – other than the obvious.
Goldilocks – This is the home buyer that looks at everything on the market. This one is too small, the lot on this one is too big. My job is to find the one that is “just right” and help them get it!
Chicken Little – This is the home seller that worries about everything – they think the sky is falling when it was only an acorn that hit their head. Is the description good enough on the photos? If we don’t have an offer the first day, what’s wrong? What if buyers don’t like the neutral paint you told us to use? My job is to try to calm their fears on the front end by educating. Selling can be very stressful and if they already have a worrisome personality, it’s all the harder. I tell people what they need to know from my years of experience working with buyers. No two houses are alike so there definitely are some variables I take into consideration. It’s not generally a one-size-fits-all marketing plan.
Cinderella – This is the client that just goes with the flow without complaining. They respect my opinions and suggestions based on my experience. They know I am going the extra mile to do everything to either sell their house or find them the perfect house. In the end, it’s a perfect fit and they get an outcome that was even better than expected. And they are usually the ones that give ME a gift at closing.
Pinocchio – This buyer doesn’t want me to know that their previous house was foreclosed on a few years ago, that they had a bankruptcy, or want to impress me with how much money they make so they lie to me. I don’t need to know any of this information. Frankly, it’s not my business as a Realtor. What I AM concerned with, however, is that they can qualify for the house so when they talk to the lender, they need to tell them because, guess what? They are going to find out anyway, and it will save some embarrassment later. The Pinocchio seller is the one that says the house does not take on any water when it rains or that they have never had a problem with termites. And then, the buyer’s pest inspector reveals that their company was just there last year to treat the house because termites had eaten through the hardwood floor in the living room – now I know why they replaced the hardwoods! Or, worse yet, about a month after closing, there is a thunderstorm and water starts filling up the crawl space. The neighbor comes over and tells the new owner all about the house and how the previous owner was always having to dry it out from heavy rains…can you say “lawsuit”?
Happy the Dwarf – This buyer or seller is similar to Cinderella, although, they don’t necessarily follow through on all my requests as a Realtor. They are just happy and it’s all going to work out. Yeah, I like the attitude, but sometimes you have to put some effort into making it work out.
The Three Little Pigs – Not all houses are created equal. Literally. And, don’t be afraid of The Ugly Duckling – with a little vision, it could become a beautiful swan.
Little Red Riding Hood – Whether the “wolf” is the opposing party, the opposing real estate agent, the lender, the appraiser, etc. don’t be fooled and get taken advantage of. Find an experienced, knowledgeable Realtor (read 10 Questions to ask your Real Estate Agent) to represent you. You need someone on your side to help guide you through the forest of home purchase or home selling. There are new rules and laws that are constantly popping up and you need to be protected.
I hope you have found some humor in this and that you call your Realtor today to say thank you – or perhaps, sorry. Let’s all live happily ever after.
Michelle Froedge is a residential Realtor and Principal Broker in the Greater Nashville and Williamson County areas of Tennessee. “Mom” to four-legged fur babies, Tyler and Livvie, Auntie to Zelamie, she is a vegetarian and sings in her spare time. Michelle has lived in Nashville and Franklin since 1997 and has been selling homes since 2004.