A little friendly conversation goes a long way!
by Annie Brouwer
(Ukiah, CA, USA)
I often walk my dogs early in the morning in my hometown and have come across many properties that I would love to get involved with. I live a small town that has a good reputation and the areas I walk through are nice spots.
However, I was held up in the morning with some calls and couldn't walk my two loveable dogs until the evening. I had often passed by this one property that had beautiful brickwork, lovely yard and a cute appearance. It always stood out and I'd often fantasized about picking it up someday and living there for the remainder of my days.
But today, I was off my routine and thank God I was. As I walked by the house I saw what appeared to me to be a distraught older lady on the porch of this quaint house and I took upon myself to use my small-town angst and see what was on her mind.
After a quick introduction, we talked about what she seemed to be fretting over. It was her house! She wanted to move to Seattle to live with her son (now a successful Microsoft employee) and didn't know where to start in "getting rid of the house". What luck, huh?
I would find out that Maggie lived there for 30 years and had originally purchased the home with her husband for $22,000 in 1968. I asked her if she would show me around the property and she was elated. There were many memories wrapped up in this home for this sweet lady but it was obvious she was ready to put this behind her and move on.
I never thought I would spark a small conversation with someone that would ever end up in a quick sale like this, but it did. I purchased the home from her for $116,000, closed it myself and paid for her moving truck and movers.
After a little fixing up and cleaning up, today the property is appraised for $325,000 and I couldn't be happier. With the market where it is today, I'm holding onto it and have some good renters. But pretty soon, we're gonna let it go and I can't wait to do this all over again.
For me, the moral of this story is, being kind and concerned for others can truly pay great dividends both in spirit and money!