It's All In What You're Used To

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 SAL.2002007747

It's All In What You're Used To Appalachian views

Going home for the holidays can remind you of the differences in life.  Choices in lifestyle that demonstrate how differently we can choose to live.

My parents retired to West Virginia some years ago, back in the mountains in a place called Bartow.  If you look on the map for it, you'll have to look hard.  It's a small place with no stoplights, none of the "modern" conveniences we take for granted in our daily lives.  There's no Wally World, no burger joints, no large grocery store.  Life requires some planning.  That midnight craving isn't so simple as running down to the corner store.  And while there's plenty of high speed Internet service, WiFi and cell phones are forbidden due to blackout requirements with the National Radio Astronomy Observatory just down the road in Green Bank.

It's a little bit of an adjustment when we visit, not having that cell phone always ready to go, laptops tied to a cable, but you adjust.  There's a river on the back of the property, beautiful mountains all around, fresh air, peace, nature at it's best.

Now we often ask our sellers for similar adjustments when they're ready to sell their home.  They're used to living a certain way, and that way may not gel with what the general public may want.  It may be "just right" for the seller's day to day lives, it IS what you're used to and it works for you, but it's not optimal to convincing the buying public that YOUR home is the right one for them.

That's where we ask for changes.  Since we work with both buyers and sellers, we know what the buyers are looking for, what they're saying when they walk in a home.  It's experience we can use to help our sellers be better positioned to grab that buyer's attention.

Now the things we ask our sellers to do aren't always what is ideal for living in a home, but living in a home and SELLING a home are often radically different.  Big furniture that shrinks room sizes, the collections that fill the shelves, bright colors and wallpaper.  They're all possible turnoffs to the prospective buyers.

You may not like all our recommendations, you may even choose to ignore those requests.  Your home, your life, your choice.  Just be aware that those recommendations are in YOUR best interest and putting years of experience to work to shorten your time on the market.  Those changes are perhaps the difference between SELLING your home, and continuing to LIVE in your home.

If you have questions about the home selling process and how we can help you, please don't hesitate to contact us!

Serving Warren County's residential real estate needs,

Liz and Bill aka BLiz


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Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas


The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth Spear, ABR, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2002007747

William (Bill) Spear, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2004011109  Kentucky 77938
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Bill Direct:  513-520-5305
Liz Direct: 513-265-3004     
Fax: 866-302-8418


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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Lynn B. Friedman 11/25/2011 01:42 PM
  2. Linda Jamail Marshall 11/26/2011 02:38 AM
Home Selling
Ohio Warren County
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Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
RE/MAX Northwest. - Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority!

Life is always full of conditions and choices. As real estate guides and consultants we have been down most of these paths before and try to keep our clients on the easy road rather than the risky or dead ends...

Nov 26, 2011 02:33 AM #32
Linda Jamail Marshall
Linda Marshall,Houston Texas, Linda Marshall, Realtors® - Houston, TX
Broker, ABR,QSC,RECS,ACRE - Innerloop Houston, Tex

excellent advice

Happy Holidays from Innerloop Houston Texas

Linda Jamail Marshall

Nov 26, 2011 02:35 AM #33
Tina Gleisner
Home Tips for Women - Portsmouth, NH
Home Tips for Women

Your message was a surprise after the story which I liked a lot. Great idea & comparision to make your point and have a great visit to West Virginia this year.

Nov 26, 2011 02:52 AM #34
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Ginger, Humankind survived long before cell phones :)  And to tell you to move?  Wow!  Landlines and call forwarding can do the trick.

Ginny, It's an adjustment to make for sure :)

Monica, If we're up front and honest (and still tactful), we've done what we can do, from there the sellers have to buy in to the program.

Judi, Exactly.  Anyone could list, but to SELL it, that's the goal for both of us :)

Paul, We try to chart the easiest road based on our experience, and if the seller chooses the one with the extra twist and turns, well that's their choice.

Tina, It's been a nice visit and change of pace :)

Nov 26, 2011 03:17 AM #35
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg IL Real Estate

Blackouts? Yikes, I won't bother to look where this place is on the map. It's true, living in a house & selling are 2 different things. Make adjustments to appeal to the most amount of buyers.

Nov 26, 2011 03:32 AM #36
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Lyn, Eastern West Virginia, about 1/2 way up the right side Lyn :)  And maximizing the appeal is almost always the best course.

Nov 26, 2011 03:46 AM #37
Kate Akerly
Kaminsky Group - Manhattan Beach, CA
Manhattan Beach Residential Sales

Bartow looks like an amazing place to get away from it all.  It would be mighty tough to get used to giving up a few of those modern conveniences though.  I had never actually heard of blackout requirements.

Sellers often don't realize what they're getting themselves into during the process of selling their home.  Getting a home prepared to show well and then constantly maintaining it that way (especially with kids, pets, or hobbies that might be difficult to get out of the way).  It's a process they best submit to as you said.  With some people I've found that it works well to monetize the cost of sitting on the market.  Then they feel like a quick sale is like getting paid to maintain the house.

Nov 26, 2011 05:36 AM #38
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

A beautiful presentation of an important topic...

Some thing you can't change - and buyers probably wouldn't be looking in the area where your parents live if cell service and close proximity to Wally World were important to them.

Some things you can change - and wise sellers will look to their experienced agents for guidance on making those changes.

Meanwhile... Your folks' place sounds "just like home" to me - only a little more extreme. Wally World is probably only about 40 miles away, and there's no prohibition on cell phones where I live - just no service until I get within a couple miles of town, 11 miles away. No last-minute trips to the grocery store for me, either, since that 11 miles is only partially paved.

Nov 26, 2011 05:54 AM #39
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Mike & Kate, It's all because of the National Radio Astronomy dishes.  Anything that generates interference to their sensitive reception and it's banned.  So they've got a 30-40 mile arc with no radio stations, no cell phones, no wi-fi, etc.  Anything that gets picked up and interferes gets tracked down and replaced with something that doesn't interfere.  And that's a good analogy monetizing the cost of sitting on market.  It's a WIIFM type thought process that wins them over.

Marte, Definitely similar in style and amenities :)  And agreed, some things are unchangeable, some you can change, and some just have the illusion of change (staging to the rescue!) :)

Nov 26, 2011 06:05 AM #40
Suzi Sandore
RealtyONEGroup - San Diego, CA
North County San Diego Homes

Your parent's place sounds like a beautiful, peaceful and relaxing place to visit. It's good to get away from the "noise" of our lives from time to time.  In addition to the well written advise you have for sellers, I would add that the reason we ask them to de-clutter the house is so that buyers can actually picture their lives in that house, not just see the seller's life. People can usually understand the reasoning, and hopefully follow through.

Nov 26, 2011 08:33 AM #41
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Suzi, Very peaceful and a nice break.  VERY hard frosts in the morning, but then very pleasant during the day :)  Buyers are fairly easily distracted, so easing that ability to picture themselves in the home is critical.

Nov 26, 2011 08:54 AM #42
Jennifer Manchester
Suburban Properties of Charlotte, LLC - Mint Hill, NC
GRI, ePRO, ASP - Broker/Home Stager

Hi Liz and Bill;


If only folks would listen!  I find the one's that do are worth my while, the one's that don't probably need to find another agent.

Nov 26, 2011 12:36 PM #43
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Jennifer, In general, the ones that don't listen usually lead to us providing someone else the opportunity to work an Expired Listing!  Not our preference, but it's a team effort and both sides have to be playing the same game.

Nov 26, 2011 01:11 PM #44
Linda Humphrey
Humphrey Home Connections Realty, Reno, Nevada - Reno, NV
CRS, Broker/Owner HHC Realty

Ok...I hate being clueless, so I've tried to resist asking...but...Wally World? And I thought I lived in civilization! We do have a Wally's Hot Springs down in Minden, but I'm thinking this isn't the same?

Oh, and P.S. Great post! Happy Thanksgiving to you both!

Nov 27, 2011 03:52 AM #45
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Linda, Wally World = Wal-mart :)  Hope you're having a great Thanksgiving holiday too!

Nov 27, 2011 07:41 AM #46
Jayson Holland - Denver, CO
Jay Holland

Did you say no cell phones? How is that even possible?

Nov 27, 2011 10:19 AM #47
Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Liz and Bill,  I am not sure I could visit such a connection free location!

Nov 27, 2011 10:22 AM #48
Rob Rosa
Berkshire Hathaway - Wethersfield, CT
Personal Real Estate Expert

Good post and interesting story.  Sellers do have to go through alot these days especially.

Nov 28, 2011 12:42 AM #49
Sylvie Stuart
Realty One Group Mountain Desert 928-600-2765 - Flagstaff, AZ
Home Buying, Home Selling and Investment - Flagsta

I love little towns like that! Great advice for Sellers, it makes a huge difference!

Dec 01, 2011 01:04 AM #50
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Jayson, Definitely possible (and even mandatory by government decree!).  We lived before them, so a few days without was okay.

Bob, High speed internet is still there, just not wi-fi or cell phone.

Rob, Until the pendulum shifts to their side, they need to be prepared to make the changes to entice the buyers to choose their home over the competition.

Sylvie, My mom is from 16 miles away from where they retired.  Small town life fits them well :)

Dec 01, 2011 01:28 AM #51
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