Who’s Fooling Who in the Mirror?

Ok everyone. Buckle up. Plenty of ground to cover. Gotta move fast.

You want to sell your house and buy another one? How do you do it, in a market where the notion of a Contingent Offer is met with almost universal fear and loathing?

The answer?  You trick yourself into it – knowing you’ll probably fight your own pre-programmed subroutines the entire way.  Sometimes benevolent strategies for self-deception are the only way to circumvent your own inertia.  Who’s really fooling who when we look in the mirror anyway?

Start with a stern reminder not to get fixated on what your house is worth.  Let that go.  It’s the relationship between what you sell and what you buy that counts.
Market goes down – you sell for less, buy for less. Market goes up – you sell for more but also buy for more.  That’s the refrain you keep coming back to – until you’ve pounded it into your own thick skull, past the little voice in your head that always says “sell high and buy low”.

The next step is “research” –  which is really just a clever way of fooling yourself into not getting overly focused on the end result too soon.  Research simply means beginning  to explore the marketplace.  Seeing properties.  Getting on a search engine. Identifying priorities. Narrowing parameters.

As long as you are merely conducting research, the pressure to “buy”  the perfect dream home is off.  There’s no panic. You aren’t ready to buy anyway.

If there are two or three places, in your price range that could conceivably work  – then you’ve successfully determined that your notion of home isn’t on Mars while the market itself is on Venus.  They are in the same ballpark. Finding a few places means there will be others. That’s all you need to know.

Now it’s time to muster your inner boy scout and invite him to undertake the performance of a lifetime.  Like any great method actor, he needs to prepare. Immerse himself totally in the role.  Become the seller of your house. Even though he has no real clue how it will all play out.

The Actor gets your home ready for sale in every way possible. Deals with all the stuff. Gets the inspections done.  Knows all the answers to all the questions before the future buyer asks them.  Stages things. Creates curb appeal. Makes it perfect.

Preparing a home for sale with full intention is what opens up space for possibility.  When you start saying goodbye to the past, the home that resides in your future can emerge in the present.

One big irrational fear that often arises goes something like this: If I put my house on the market, someone will make a full price offer the first day. I’ll have to sell before I’ve found another home and I’ll be homeless!

A quick deconstruction of this multi-story edifice  tells us we don’t have to sell if someone makes a full price offer – that’s an urban myth. And listing Agents often neglect to educate sellers about something called a Seller’s Contingency – the ultimate backdoor out in the face of all offers. And, there is always Plan B, if someone makes an offer to good to refuse. You can rent. Not a first choice maybe but definitely beats homeless.

If you can only visualize going through this process if it means finding the perfect home without any sacrifice or hard work or compromise then what you are really saying is that you are willing hang onto your imperfect home that already requires lots of sacrifice and compromise so you can avoid the specter of change.

Well, with the help of a little misdirection that get’s us up to the point of actually going on the market. Maybe next week, we’ll really try to sell the thing.

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