In spite of our otherwise patchy financial situation, we are blessed to live in a home near the water, set up on a bluff with a nice view of the straits leading to the Pacific Ocean.
And we're certainly grateful for our lovely view; be it of the water or the ever-changing vista of the Olympic Mountains.
That said, we also love our trees, which are growing up all around us. We love the shelter and privacy they afford us; you pretty much can't see much of the house and the back yard from the street... and we like that.
Sunset view from our upper back deck*
A Visitor of a Different Value Set...
Recently, a friend — or rather, "a friendly acquaintance" — who also happens to be a real estate agent was visiting, and I guess she just wasn't able to set down her "professional hat" while she was in our home.
"You really should cut down those trees and maximize your view!" she offered.
Mrs. Denmarkguy and I both cringed a bit... because, as I said, we love our trees and our privacy. And we still have some lovely "Zen Views" between the trees.
For a moment, I was reminded of many years ago when I was selling my last house... talking to several realtors who were all of the same persuasion that I needed to make my house "totally neutral" before putting it on the market.
In the end, I chose to list with a realtor who specialized in marketing "homes with personality," and he actually ended up getting a higher price — in the end — than the estimates by those who wanted to "neutralize" that home.
Yes, we have trees "intruding" on our view...
The Quick and Easy Way...
Of course, nobody's really at fault here.
In theory, when you offer an "entirely beige" house with a front yard that is nothing but a treeless mowed lawn, you are offering potential buyers a "blank canvas" they can turn into their home, according to their personal visions.
It's an idea based on making the sale as fast and easy as possible, for both a home seller, and a realtor. It's based on "the average" more than on actually meeting people's end needs.
This post, however, is neither about real estate, nor about a slightly rude visitor... it's about the way so many people tend to "not be bothered" to do things really well, or to get things exactly right.
Whatever "causes" this kind of indifference may have, it seems to me it's what gives birth to the likes of WalMart... and the death of the individualized mom-and-pop operation that caters to each individual.
One of our views in winter...
In the case of my old house, the fact that it was unusual and "customized" in many ways was seen by most as a drawback, rather than an added value.
Noteworthy, though, is that the realtors who thought we should "paint it off white" and "get rid of the odd decor" estimated it to be worth $250,000-$260,000 (in its "neutral" state), while the realtor who took it on and sold it's oddity and character as a valued feature, ended up selling it for $295,000, against an original listing price of $315,000.
Granted, it took 80 days to sell vs. an average sell time of 35 days on the market, for the town where I used to live.
But again, I keep coming back to the consideration of what we value; in life... and whether our tendency to choose "the easy and convenient way" is robbing us of the choices and variety that serve to make life interesting.
Just something to think about...
Thanks for reading!
(Another #creativecoin creative non-fiction post)
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