I was having one of those walk-down-memory-lane moments this morning when it occured to me that we tend to focus on the negative here. Blogs are great forums for venting – A, dare I say, healthy outlet for cleansing our soles of our real estate demons. So I started thinking about the funny side of this business and some of the dumb, embarrassing, and unfortunate things I have experienced. There are the trivial anecdotes, of course, that are deserving of my personal wall of shame.
- The time I arrived at a listing appointment in a “no shoes” house and, upon removing my very stylish “big girl boots”, revealed one striped knee sock and one white athletic sock. Faced with an instant dilemna, I rallied to the cause and removed my socks as well. Note to self: Slingbacks.
- The unfortunate incident where, showing the first home of what would have been a six home tour, I locked my lockbox key in the home, severely cutting short our afternoon. (Who hasn’t done that?) Fortunately, they felt sorry for me and stayed loyal.
- The time I arrived at the office early for a Saturday morning showing tour. First one in on this particular day, I unlocked the door, disarmed the alarm, grabbed some paperwork and returned to the parking lot to proudly await my client’s arrival. Sadly, I had in the process locked my purse, my cell phone, my car keys – the whole enchilada – in the office. (They were not so forgiving, as they “decided not to buy at this time”).
- The “Where’s Waldo” incident where, near the conclusion of a walk-through, I assured the Seller who had to leave that we would look after the family dog. We spent the final 30 minutes of our visit chasing Scruffy (name changed to protect the innocent) through a near-by canyon.
- The encounter with a nice woman at the Community Fair where, after shaking hands and saying what a pleasure it was to meet her, I heard the response, “You sold my house”! (OK, not one of my finer moments, but it was a loooong time ago, and one of those rare transactions where we had very little direct contact. She got a very good price, by the way).
- My first-ever listing appointment where I essential chained myself to the kitchen table and refused to leave until they hired me. After THREE hours, the poor wife finally said to her husband, “Joe, sign the damn listing. She seems nice, and I can’t go through this again”. (They got a handsome price, as well).
Perhaps the most hilarious story is the one that a good friend of ours tells about the difficulties of showing a home in a “hot” market. Several years ago, when simply opening ones garage door was cause for a pack of rabid buyers to storm the property waving checkbooks and offers, this agent had a client who desperately wanted to see a new listing. Tenant occupied, it required 24-hour’s notice, which meant they might not be the first in the door and, therefore would likely not have a chance at the home. The agent called the listing agent and, after incessant pleading, struck a deal to show the property that evening under the condition that she pay the tenant $100 for the inconvenience. When they pulled into the complex, this agent did not realize that at the fork in the road, a left turn would put her on the correct street. She turned right, onto the wrong street but onto a street with identical, mirrored house numbers (and houses). Arriving at the door, a man answered and, looking bewildered, said, “That’s strange, my wife didn’t tell me she put the house up for sale”. But… he let them in, they toured the home, and while making their grand exit, handed him a hundred dollar bill without explanation. Hours later, when she realized her mistake, she returned alone and asked for (and got) the hundred dollars back. Ah, the good ol’ days.