It Was The Worst of Times & It Was The Best of Times, The Closing Gift That Keeps on Giving

By
Real Estate Agent with Florida Supreme Realty SL514814

First let's try to understand the home selling process as the worst of times.  Look at the primary word in the previous sentence, hopefully you've all focused on the word "HOME", that's what delineates our task whether we are on the Buyer side or the Seller side of the transaction.  We try to empathize with all parties as much as possible but it is a most difficult task at times.  The parents who raised their entire brood in style and now are forced to downsize into a tiny condominium.  The newly divorced barely able to survive their court costs let alone a comparably sized house to raise the kids in.  I won't dwell on the negativity.  The best of times, where you first learned to ride your two wheeler.  Your first kiss or when you got your very own puppy.  A wedding day where you were carrying or being carried over the threshold.  Is that tradition still in existence?  The memories can be endless when it comes to remembering your "HOME".  Having a tangible piece of your life's history is always a good thing.  A house cannot procure this emotion.  It takes the innate qualities of a home to sustain these endearing thoughts. 

A rudimentary sketch of a basic house possibly done by a child    

With that we arrive at one of our most popular closing gifts, the charcoal sketch of the family home!  This was before major companies or professional artists competed for this tiny slice of the visual arts market.  We would ask the local students of the nearby High School and often talented middle schoolers too if they would like to test their abilities with some sketches of our listings and or closed sales.  We provided the materials to sometimes an entire class and had the teachers distribute pictures of the subject properties to the students of their choice.  Other times some would stop by the office(s) on their own to see if they could help with our new novel idea.  What transpired was a plethora of local talent seemingly immersed in a project that had no time limitations and also offered some non-classroom oriented creativity.  Essentially, a free form of human engineered Photo-Shop that moved and / or matured the landscaping, eliminated telephone poles and electric wires from view , generally giving a fresh look at what was once the "place where we lived".  This started almost 40 years ago and has been an infrequent gift of recent years.  The impact, though, has spanned a few of our customer's generations with the fabulous memories they provide.  Most were proudly displayed and of course nicely framed in a matted, sometimes double matted design which appropriately matched the owners tastes and decor.  I know that the memories of my lifetime are intertwined with the homes in which I lived.  Giving a piece of each home back to it's owner is something that most will cherish in ways we cannot always grasp with the exception of knowing that not all houses are homes, it's the people, our customers who make that happen, we only provide the means.

A simple ranch home sketched with some landscaping             

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Rainmaker
1,794,277
Ginny Gorman
RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate - North Kingstown, RI
Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond

How very cool and community minded by doing it this way...just a great idea.

Mar 14, 2011 02:04 PM #1
Rainmaker
360,767
Larry & Jacque Ficek
Alaska Dream Makers - Wasilla, AK
Realtors - Wasilla Alaska

Kevin, what a great twist to include local kiddos (and talent) in the process. Ingenious and thoughtful marketing tool!

Jacque & Larry

Mar 14, 2011 02:04 PM #2
Rainmaker
1,010,576
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Ginny, it is amazing to see how many commercial entities thrive by doing this.  It was a win-win for all we thought.

Jacque & Larry, being that my drawing talents are much less than enviable it's fun to see how the students perceive a particular home from their point of view.  I know I couldn't do it well at all!

Mar 14, 2011 02:39 PM #3
Rainmaker
4,493,650
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Kevin,

You are very creative, what a wonderful idea.  Congratulations and continued success. A

Mar 14, 2011 06:10 PM #4
Rainmaker
1,010,576
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Alexandra, the creativity was spawned by the students, my skills there are atrocious at best.  The idea apparently has caught on with great success. 

Mar 15, 2011 12:16 AM #5
Rainmaker
841,108
Joshua Zargari
MJ Decorators Workshop LI staging and home decorating - Lynbrook, NY
MJ Decorators Workshop

Kevin, a great idea.

Mar 15, 2011 05:13 AM #6
Rainmaker
671,751
Sandy Shores FL Realtor®, Melbourne Real Estate
M & M Realty of Brevard Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Brevard County Real Estate, Florida's Space Coast

Kevin, What a unique and incredible idea!  I can see where sellers would proudly display their charcoal sketch of the home that held so many memories for them in a prominent place for all eyes to see.  What a great gift for buyers of a new home also; of a new beginning.  Handmade and homemade gifts are by far the best and most thoughtful gifts of all. We can go out to the store and buy something with money, but a store bought gift doesn't come from the heart.

Mar 15, 2011 07:43 AM #7
Rainmaker
1,010,576
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Joshua, thanks, it's minimal effort affecting many in a positive way.

Sandy, even though several commercial artists provide this service now they never seem to capture the feeling that the kids generated with their enthusiasm.  Perfection wasn't the intent, like you said it is about the heart captured inside it. 

Mar 15, 2011 08:59 AM #8
Rainmaker
628,455
Carla Freund
Keller Williams Preferred Realty - Raleigh, NC
Raleigh - Cary Triangle Real Estate 919-602-8489

Kevin - Very well written1 I like how you included students. I'm sure it gave them a lot of pride as well.

Mar 17, 2011 12:27 PM #9
Rainmaker
1,010,576
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Carla, their artistic styles overtly exceeded our expectations which suited some customers more perfectly.  My tastes were drawn to the more modern and contemporary content.  Some were amazing, and I now wish I had a photographic inventory of all of them!

Mar 18, 2011 12:40 AM #10
Rainer
478,183
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

The charcoal sketch has always been one of my favorite closing gifts, but there are too few charcoal (or watercolor) artists anymore, leaving me to create unique planters using plants that can thrive indoors with heat, no humidity, and neglect.

Mar 21, 2011 12:30 PM #11
Rainmaker
1,010,576
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Wow, that's interesting Russel.  Where would I read more about those?  Along with no artistic talent the "green thumb" is non-existent also. 

Mar 21, 2011 01:01 PM #12
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Rainmaker
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Kevin J. May

Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida
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