The pyrotechnical holiday is almost upon us. It’s one of my favorites. The celebration of the birth of this country can rarely be anything but fun-filled; especially for those of us who love any excuse to light the wick of a somewhat innocuous (if handled appropriately) explosive.
Last summer’s family firework display was slated to be the biggest and best on record. Having had three teenage daughters at one time, that requires a pretty serious combination of combustible chemicals to beat.
As per proper firework protocol, I had saved the three most spectacular aerials for last. It was going to be the most impressive celebratory finale in family firework history. As I approached the first of the three explosives set for the finale, the Komodo 3000 (119 shot aerials), I spotted a full-size SUV approaching. As I was setting these explosives to fire in the middle of my street, I refrained from lighting the fuse and moved it aside for the car to pass. The car did not pass. The car slowed down. The car stopped. The driver of the car rolled down his window. The driver was a uniformed police officer. As it turns out, my home resides in a prohibited area … by half a block. Had I actually set fire to the wick before I spotted that SUV, that particular firework show would have been the most expensive one on record as well. It was quite disappointing.
In the past few weeks, I have been showing a number of homes to two different sets of clients who have come from out of state. On Saturday, we toured eight homes. After each home, my clients both walked out with markedly disenchanted looks on their faces. It seemed that each home we toured consisted of at least one deal killer. A deal killer is basically a fundamental flaw that cannot be overcome within reason. What may be a deal killer for one person, may not be for another. My clients have a top 10 list — 10 of the most important things they are looking for in a home, in order of importance. Generally, the first three to four items on that list are non-negotiable. As we toured each of these homes, it was apparent that many of us in this industry have some very good photographers. How something appears in a two-dimensional photo is often nothing like how it appears in real life.
As we approached the last of the eight homes for the day, one of them turned to me and said, “Maybe we should rethink moving here. It doesn’t feel like it’s going to work out. We haven’t really accomplished anything here today.”
I get it. We’d spent the entire day looking at homes without having found “the one.” They were exhausted, stressed, emotional and both overwhelmed and underwhelmed at the same time. I assured them that what they were feeling was normal; all of it. I also let them know that we actually had accomplished a great deal this day. Finding the right home is a process. It takes time and since we had very little of it, we were having to cram it all into two short days. This was adding to the pressure of the situation and creating some anxiety.
“Since we are here, let’s look at this home and then you can go back to your hotel and get some rest.” As we walked through the last home, I could see my client trying very hard to overlook the blatant “deal killers.”
“This could work. I could live here. It would be small. We could change the yard and maybe put in another window and hope the neighbors on both sides upgrade or at least move their living room furniture off the porch.”
Oh dear. I could not let these guys light this wick. It would be an expensive mistake. We parted. Over that day, I got to really know my clients. I realized that what they were looking for existed, we just needed to move it a little further north. The next morning, I called them. “I know it isn’t your first choice in location, but there are just three more homes we should look at just a few miles north from your desired destination before you go back today.” He was all in. She reluctantly agreed. The very first home we saw that day fit all their criteria. They are now preparing to move into their dream home.
This year, I’m moving my party half a block north. This time the show will go on, and there won’t be any disappointing finales.