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Badge of Honor

June 05 2017
June 05 2017

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Thank you to all of you who responded to our Red Alert and called into Mark Levine’s office re: AB71. It was a successful effort in that the Assembly didn’t vote on it this session, presumably because the bill didn’t have enough support to pass.   I actually missed writing the Monday memo, believe it or not.  But, I’m back… and I hope everyone has had a successful few weeks.  With the coming and going of Memorial Day weekend, I feel a definite stall in the market and a pause of communication from my clients. I seem to recall the same feeling last year as well; I’m wondering what you all are feeling out there.

Last week, I took a real three day weekend.  I had nothing really scheduled (on purpose) and was going to allow myself the freedom to do whatever I wanted.  I read 2 books (felt productive), went on a long trail run (I fell, of course), hiked in Santa Rosa with a good friend (unbelievable trails), watched a lot of tv (so happy to veg out), napped, but honestly, I got a little bored. I can’t remember the last time I was bored and it was a welcome state of being.  When Max was young, I didn’t allow him a lot of free time; always wanting to encourage enrichment and activities or playdates. We don’t live in a neighborhood where it’s easy (nor safe) to push a little kid out the door and tell him to come back before dinner so we drove him from one activity to another. I’ve relaxed now that he’s older and don’t schedule him for much without giving him plenty of notice and an opt out.  He just wants to “chillax” these days and I get it.   We adults and REALTORS wear “busy” as a badge of honor. A boast disguised as a complaint. Dare I say it’s self imposed by ambition, anxiety or addiction?  I mean really, a non-busy REALTOR will never make any money, right? So if we’re not juggling clients and showings and marketing and listing houses, we’re not successful, right?  Even if we don’t have any clients, we can still pretend to be busy by looking at hundreds of homes, social media surfing, and networking like crazy but frankly, at a pretty huge cost.  I used to have to change my ring tone because the sound of it was making me develop an anxious tic. The general public doesn’t care if we’re frantically working to juggle work and life. So why do we fill every bit of free time? Perhaps though, the very best times of our lives, the most memorable ones are the days when we take a pause and simply enjoy life.  So, I’m going to appreciate the languidly approaching summer and the fact that my phone isn’t ringing so much. The pleasures afforded by these slower times are valuable and needed.  Great to connect with friends, to contemplate the meaning of life, explore the beauty of our County, to get ready to push to the next level again.  If only I can keep from stressing out that I’m not busy!

A few weeks ago, I was singing a different tune… I had several listings under a million on the market that were attracting 50 potential buyers each weekend. They each sold well over the asking price and with multiple offers; many of them without any contingencies. I know that in this market, Buyers feel compelled to put their best feet forward and go in guns a blazing which still often times leads to defeat and frustration.  As they get more and more used to not winning, their offers get more and more brazen. Several agents have commented on this phenomenon and I think it’s worth mentioning.  When the tides of the market turn and buyers are in their homes that they waived inspections on and happen to find inevitable problems in the home, it’s you and I that are going to be called right back into their issues. Once, as a listing agent, I countered a non-contingent offer with a short inspection period because I knew I had to cover my butt in representing a house with a ton of issues (disclosed of course) but would have benefited from further inspections, engineers etc.  So just a word of caution… be careful out there in advising your clients to waive or not waive their contingencies.

We’re headed into summer.  I hope there’s opportunity out there for our Buyers to get into properties that they love.  And I hope that you’re happily busy and sometimes just as happily relaxing into the season.  Til next week….


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