Real estate lessons from a bird?

Something happened in my yard yesterday that made me think about how important location is and why buyers need somebody with experience to guide them.

A robin built a nest in one of my bushes.  I have like 50 bushes in my backyard.  This poor robin picked the one right by my backdoor.  And she built it about 2 feet off the ground.

I am sure she thought it would be great to be over there by the dryer vent on these cool spring mornings.

She worked hard building a really nice nest.  It was a great place, she thought, to lay her 3 eggs.

If this robin had asked me, I would have told her I have a dog.  I also would have told her about the neighbor’s cat named Stewart that walks down the fence several times a day.  Stewart is the reason my wife can no longer feed the birds.  Our feeder area became an all you can eat buffet for that stupid cat.

Had she asked, I would have suggested one of the taller bushes at the back of my yard, on the far side of where Stewart cuts between my house and my neighbor’s house to get home.

But there are no realtors for bird houses.

You probably see where this is going.  My dog knocked the nest out of the bush and the eggs fell to the ground.  I can’t really blame my dog for being a dog, but we were looking forward to watching this robin’s journey to motherhood.

When you are buying a house, there is a lot of stuff to process.  It is easy to focus on what you like and assume you are seeing the whole picture.  Even more so when you have to make a quick decision in a fast moving market.  I always try to make sure my clients know everything I know about a location or house.

Some things I’ve told clients:

“I know you like that this house is right across the street from the school.  Between 2:05 and 2:50, there will be 500 moms parked in idling SUVs and minvans in front of this house.  Will that bother you?”

“I know you don’t mind that this house is on a busy road.  I know you’ll have 3 teenage drivers in the next few years.  I wanted to make sure you realized that they won’t be able to park on this street and this driveway is only one car wide.”

“I know this is a great house and any house will sell fast in this market.  I think that only having two bedrooms upstairs and the rest in the basement will make this house harder to sell in a soft market.”

I couldn’t do anything to help this robin, but I can help you pick the right place to live.


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