Yesterday I showed my house to the first of three or four realtors I’m interviewing to see who might best represent my precious place to the most appropriate buyers.
IMHO my house is special – beautiful grounds, mature landscaping and trees, beautifully remodeled, uniquely inviting, views from every window, secluded and quiet yet close in…. etc etc.
The realtor and her business partner oohed and ahhed at all the right places, but when it came down to talking about price, they suggested a price about $100k below what I might have asked a couple of years ago. There’s such a glut of homes on the market that buyers are focused most on how cheap they can go, they said.
I knew it was bad, but I didn’t expect it to be that low.
“Well, you can ask more, but nobody will bother to come see it. Pricing it right is everything…”
Then they proceeded to tell me all the things I could spend thousands more dollars to fix it up so there’d be nothing to trip up a sale deal.
OK. I’ve already ordered a replacement for my front door unit because it’s irredeemably wonky for years. I know that the turquoise wall color I chose for the upstairs bathroom is a little too wild – and I’m willing to repaint it something more muted (it’s small…) but I’m not going to re-roof or install air-conditioning.
They suggested I replace my current big desk with something dainty and unobtrusive so my office looks more massive than my desk. (Humongo* desk – my other desk – used to sit behind the chair of my current big desk – aren’t two big desks better than one? Of course.)
They also said, “The less you have in your closets, garage, bookcases, cupboards, rooms the better. So sell it, give it away or dump anything that won’t fit into your future 100 sq.ft. home.”
Then they said, “And have it ready to go on the market ASAP – no later than mid-August, because by mid-October buyers go into hibernation.”
They had to revive me with smelling salts. Three weeks to sort through a lifetime of treasures? I was moving at a six-month pace.
The boxes and cabinets of history on paper are what scare me the most. I’m a writer…paper is my stock in trade, and I also have family photos going back a hundred years. Plus all the scrapbooks, kids’ mementos. The mind boggles.
I need a nap!