I was talking with a client this week after a particularly unsatisfying trip out to look at new listings that just came on the market. Here’s her situation. I have a feeling it might sound a little familiar to some of you.
She sold her condo a few months ago and moved into a rental. She’s been looking ever since. Still searching for a move-up house that will become her home for a long time to come.
There are days she’s hopeful. Days she’s frustrated. Days she’s anxious. Days she wonders if somehow she’s traded in the dream of homeownership for a permanent spot on the rent rolls. Days she wishes she could paint the wall in the kitchen. Days she wishes some of her stuff wasn’t in storage.
Days she can’t believe there isn’t more on the market to chose from. Days she’s convinced the universe is plotting against her – personally. Days when the promise of a new listing magically floats up on her computer screen and she gets excited all over again. And of course, some days with all of the above.
It wasn’t the original plan to relocate temporarily into a rental. At least not Plan A – which would have been: Take advantage of the spring surge in market activity when multiple offers started flying. Get her condo into escrow with some really tight contingency timelines. With a really good, all-cash buyer. Or at least one with a solid, slam-dunk loan process in front of them.
From there she, would open herself up to the fates. Or luck. Or divine intervention. Or the rule of karmic law. Or the mysteries of synchronicity. Or the vagaries of quantum possibility. Hoping she could find just the right house at just the right price – quickly.
Then, she’d make an offer. Beat out the competition. And get it accepted. We’d choreograph everything so that there could be a reasonably simultaneous closing on both places (or a short rent back period on the first).
No, Plan A is not a very easy task these days. I’m not sure it ever was. It was easi-er in the past though.
The Plan B we discussed long before we ever listed the condo was exactly this. Sell it. Liberate the equity. Get rid of the hassle. Take the plunge. Suffer through the indignities of having to live in a home while it’s for sale. In the middle of the fishbowl. In anything but normal fashion. On a staged stage you are supposed to leave every time someone wants to come over and look.
If there’s anyone who actually enjoys the process of selling the house they are living in, they should have their head examined.
There was also a Plan C of course. There always is. Plan C is the one where you simply don’t do anything. You make the default choice to not move at all. Much easier in the short run. You just breathe a long sigh of relief. And resign yourself to hunkering down in a place where you aren’t happy. May even be miserable in.
It’s funny how often people choose to accept what they know is not working in their lives. Instead of choosing to face something far more terrifying – the unknown of change. Specially when it has to do with home and all things familiar. The stuff. The routines. All the established patterns we surround ourselves with and anchor our lives to – for good and bad, better and worse.
That’s the beauty of this business which isn’t really a business so much as a calling – if you view it in the right way. It puts Agents in touch with some of people’s deepest fears. It includes us in their intimate stories. It invites us to become Agents of Change.
And ultimately it provides us with proof positive over the years, that it’s possible to choose change. Confront our resistance to the unknown. Embrace it. Actually come to view it as an adventure rather than an arduous and awful journey. And to come out the other side. Happy. Healthy. Balanced. Safely ensconced.
She will find the right place. I don’t have any doubt.