Every year about now, my twin sister Jill, gets a little blue. It seems another birthday has come and gone with very little fanfare . . .
Of course, I blame her for this very human oversight. The simple truth is that if you want people to remember and celebrate your birthday, you need to let them know it's important to you! (Thankfully, Plaxo and Facebook make it so much easier for us to easily inform family and friends, but I'm not above making a well-timed phone call or two . . .) Forget the subtle hints, subtext, humble pie and misplaced assumptions. If you want to be noticed, you need to SCREAM it from the rooftop - "It's my birthday. Let's eat cake!"
However, with respect to Real Estate, there is often an element of mystery involved. My job involves highly-skilled negotiations as I advocate for my clients and their best interest. Not infrequently, successful sale inceptions require stealth and good timing. Understanding a seller's motivation often requires covert investigation and subtle inquiry. Like a good game of chess, I am assessing my opponents at every turn and trying to stay one step ahead of the game!
But with respect to our relationship, I need to understand your true motives and intentions from the get go. I do need to understand your finances (really!) and I need ALL of the relevant information that informs your decisions as we move through the process.
Without your complete trust and your unedited input, I am bound to be working at a disadvantage, which may result in wasted time and unfortunate missteps. And in a market that is already heavily fraught with land mines, missteps are best avoided at all costs! Like your attorney or family physician, our business together is confidential! Your sale, your personal relationships and your finances are NOT an open book, nor should they be. Moreover, the amount you paid or what you sold your lovely home for is nobody's business but your own (nosy neighbors and best friends alike)!
So let's agree to be as up front with one another as possible. I will keep you fully informed throughout the process, provide options, give my opinion when asked, carefully listen to your goals and objectives, then act upon your directives. You will provide full disclosure so that I have the necessary tools to help you successfully navigate the rocky world of real estate with positive results. (That seems fair - doesn't it?)
And since you are sharing with me, I will share with you that I turned 49 last week, I love tulips and peonies (cheeky!) and I am a fan of angel food cake with fresh strawberries and whip cream.
Let's eat cake!
Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 15 years and has published more than 600 essays. She is also a frequent contributor to the Sound Off column in the Real Estate section of The San Francisco Chronicle.