It's No Longer Ours

There comes a time when we decide to sell something that means a lot to us - our home, property, a beach house, car, boat, RV, or similar item that we esteem. Until that point we value it and enjoy owning and using it. However, once we reach the decision to sell it, ownership of that item transfers from us. We don't know who the new owner is, but we know it is not us. The same is true for our customers when they make a decision to sell.

The item that we are selling ceases to be ours. We have given up emotional title and claim to the property the moment a decision is reached to sell it - even before it is advertised or anyone knows that it is available.

As such, we must treat it with added respect - as a guest or visitor would do. We actually are using someone else's property at that point - we just don't know who the new owner will be yet.

This is a major paradigm shift, but an important one. That's why we paint, fix up, clean, and get everything ready in the home or vehicle before listing it - knowing that we are making it ready for someone else to enjoy. Our ownership claim has ended. We are only being given temporary rights to continue using it until a sale occurs.

Many people react just the opposite and figure that since they are selling it, they can be a little more careless or reckless with the property - that it doesn't really matter how they take care of it since it soon will belong to someone else. That is unfair to the eventual new owner and will hurt the price achieved and the time needed to sell it.

 


Steve HoffackerCAPS, CEAC, SHSS, is a licensed Certified Aging In Place Specialist - Master Instructor and best-selling author of aging in place books. To learn about this and other programs for aging in place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555. Also, check out the "Aging & Accessibility" groups on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Comment balloon 42 commentsSteve Hoffacker • June 20 2014 09:17PM

Comments

Steve, very thoughtful post this fine morning. We should keep these thoughts in mind! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) about 5 years ago

Wayne,

Thank you. Enjoy your weekend! :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

The only thing left after the sale is the memories. Those will never go away. You just move on and create new ones.

Posted by Bill Reddington, Destin Florida Real Estate (Re/max Southern Realty) about 5 years ago

Hey Steve,

Totally agree with this post.  Some people don't see the shift in ownership as a positive and hence leave a mess for the next person.

Best of GREAT success to you in 2014!

Posted by Jordon Wheeler, J W Group Real Estate Sales and Service (The Jordon Wheeler Group) about 5 years ago

The emotional ties are there from our history with a home or a car but we do need to detach to sell it I agree Steve.

Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) about 5 years ago

Good insight, Steve.  Those who give up responsibility for caring for their homes even before their property is sold are short-sighted and just hurting themselves.

Posted by Brian Schulman, Lancaster County PA RealEstate Expert 717-951-5552 (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Lancaster PA) about 5 years ago

 I have listed homes where the owners had "detachment disorder" and had a hard time leaving it, I found that their new home was the quickest cure to the syndrome. Thanks for the post!

Posted by Janet Fetterman, Selling Luxury Lifestyles... (Royal Shell Real Estate Inc) about 5 years ago

I feel you, the last thing want to do is miss it and rememebr the hard times and good times you had with it.

Posted by Michael Ha Elmhurst, Woodside, Maspeth (Rego Park, Forest Hills, Jackson Heights, Corona, Middle Village) about 5 years ago

Bill,

Memories are powerful and long lasting. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Jordan,

They fail to maintain the property - stewardship! :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Gary,

Thanks. We definitely need the detachment. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Brian,

Thanks. They also are holding on to that which they need to let go. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Janet,

Counseling is some times part of the job. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Michael,

Selling is a conscious decision. Then it's time move on - with the memories. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Great post, Steve. If is remarkable how much the love for a car goes up when we get it detailed.

Posted by John Mosier, Prescott's Patriot Agent 928 533-8142 (Realty ONE Group Mountain Desert) about 5 years ago

Steve- we looked at a home in VA years ago and the seller had a very nice request at the entry table... they had just refinished their floors, so please remove our shoes so that the new owner would be able to enjoy all of the efforts. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) about 5 years ago

John,

That's true, but if the decision to sell it has been made ... :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Kathy,

Good illustration. Thanks. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Steve,

You know how to word it much better than I ever could about this.

 

 

Posted by Pete Xavier, Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide (Investments to Luxury) about 5 years ago

Steve,

This post is brilliant! Every word is true! I'm so happy to see it featured.

Thank you! You even opened up my eyes!!!

Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) about 5 years ago

Pete,

What a nice thing to say. Thanks. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Patricia,

Thank you for your gracious comments. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Well said, Steve. Many sellers have a problem letting go but they made the choice & really need to look at the larger picture. Their time in the home is over & will NOT be forgotten. They need to move forward to making new memories at their new home AND respect those they are asking to take over their former home.

Thanks for sharing,
Bruce

 

Posted by Bruce Kunz, REALTOR®, Brick & Howell NJ Homes for Sale (C21 Solid Gold Realty, Brick, NJ, 732-920-2100) about 5 years ago

Steve, in perfect agreement with you for the thoughts you share in this post.

Yes, it's not about us anymore because it does not belong to us! One must 'detach' emotionally!

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) about 5 years ago

I love when the neighbors say "you can't do that because the previous owner did that"! My wife told them that if he wanted this he should have taken them with him. Why would the neighbor care?

Posted by Gerard Gilbers, Your Marketing Master (Higher Authority Markeing) about 5 years ago

A timely post, Steve! Yes, when we're preparing to sell something, we need to let go of it emotionally first. 

Posted by Maria Morton, Kansas City Real Estate 816-560-3758 (Chartwell Kansas City Realty) about 5 years ago

I have found that until the seller detaches from the property, it is a difficult process to sell it. Sometimes we need to help them through the process. 

Posted by Sheri Sperry - MCNE®, (928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR® (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) about 5 years ago

Bruce,

Thanks for understanding the post. Good comments. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Praful,

Well said. Thank you. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Maria,

Yes. Thank you. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Sheri,

Agreed. Thank you. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Gerard, thank you. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

To not keep a property maintained, and abuse it just before selling is disrespect to the new owner. Not my kind of seller.

Posted by Pamela Seley, Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA (West Coast Realty Division) about 5 years ago

When you stop to consider that everything here is at best ON LOAN, we all do well to relax

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) about 5 years ago

Pamela,

Right. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

Richie,

True. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

I'm always telling my sellers that the minute they decide to list their home they need to stop thinking of it as their "home" and start thinking of it as a "house for sale." Get the emotions out as quickly as possible.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage ) about 5 years ago

Nina,

Precisely. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

I've got a seller who won't let go of the property. He wants to micromanage every detail of how the buyer will redevelop the site...someone's got to break the seller's heart at some point and tell him to let it go...

Posted by Tim Bradley, Commercial Real Estate Expert in Jackson Hole, WY (Contour Investment Properties) about 5 years ago

Tim,

Think you need to let him go ... it doesn't sound like it will close anyway. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

This too shall pass element going on here. :)

 

 

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) about 5 years ago

Thank you, Laura. :)

Steve

Posted by Steve Hoffacker, Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor (Steve Hoffacker LLC) about 5 years ago

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