It's 6:15 am and I'll admit I'm more than a little nervous. I've tossed and turned throughout the night and I'm definitely suffering from high anxiety, followed closely by fear.
This morning, I head into the second surgery of a multi-part dental saga. Three months ago, Dr. MacDonald, a gifted oral surgeon in Oakland, extracted a molar that had suffered a failed root canal and was beyond saving, and now that the tissue has healed, phase two involves inserting a titanium screw into the bone. Once that fuses, there's a third procedure and, finally, I'll return to my primary dentist for an implant which will be secured by the aforementioned screw. (Who knew such hardware could cost a small fortune?) Once done, my smile will supposedly be restored to its former glory (be that as it may).
Never mind that Dr. MacDonald - and his staff - are extremely caring, trained, and talented professionals who come highly recommended, and have treated me with nothing but kid gloves, explaining the process in great detail, and even bringing me a heated blanket for the procedure before quietly putting me under. (Thank you.)
The sad truth is that no matter how skilled the team, I carry a tremendous amount of childhood trauma into any dental appointment including something as basic as a teeth cleaning as a result of of a sadistic dentist our folks sent us to as children. (They didn't know the guy was raging behind closed doors). Think "Little Shop of Horrors," and you wouldn't be too far off track.
Taking a cue from Dr. MacDonald's anesthesiologist, "Breathe slowly and inhale deeply," has been our advice to more than a few nervous clients as of late.
With higher interest rates, ongoing threats of additional hikes, a potential recession, and continued turmoil in Ukraine (not to mention the wettest winter in recent history), selling a house in today's market is no longer a guaranteed home run . . . which makes for (you guessed it) HEIGHTENED anxiety for many home sellers who fear they missed the windfalls of 2021-early 2022 (you did). In short, it's a roller coaster of mixed emotions and expectations to be sure. But it's not all doom and gloom . . . .
The good news is that in spite of many unknowns on the horizon, we've seen a tremendous amount of renewed interest in the marketplace after a steep drop-off last fall, Our Open Houses have been incredibly active and for the most part, many properties are still receiving multiple offers when positioned correctly ("position" being the operative word here), proving the old adage "that good houses sell in ANY market."
Still, the number one concern most prospective Sellers have when we meet with them is our "suggested" list price, even though Sarah and I explain (in great detail) that we are not setting the value of the house; we are devising a "marketing strategy" designed to bring the highest and best result. Ultimately, in a free market economy, the market (aka: a qualified Buyer) ALWAYS sets "value," but our hope and our intention is to manipulate and leverage interest in favor of the Sellers. If we have only one offer at the table, that's nearly impossible to do. Dance with three or four, and we've got ourselves a horse race. (Excuse the mixed metaphors.) The art of negotiation happens when several interested parties are in pursuit.
So keep breathing, keep packing, keep purging, and entrust your sale to us.
Our goal is to remove as much of the anxiety, stress, fear, and worry from the process as possible, with the caveat that everyone brings some baggage to the table, and moving, no matter the reason, is a difficult process at best.
That being said, when all is said and done, let's see if we can restore your smile . . . .
How can we help you?
Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 18 years and has published more than 750 humorous but always informative, essays on life and real estate.