It’s that time of year when we hear adds on the radio for long stem roses and heart shaped boxes of chocolate. I’ve always been a big fan of “hearts”, on picture frames, dish towels, sweaters or wrapping paper – so cute! Very little resemblance to the beating thing inside our chest (thank goodness!)- but very appealing!

Our commercial symbol of the heart is usually various shades of pink and red and is often symbolized as throbbing in some way. And it does symbolize our biological heart – which does FEEL different when we are emotionally connected to someone or something. Like a house.

As most of you know – I spent many years in Corporate Real Estate with Taco Bell. Now franchisees can get very emotional about their business, their building and their livelihood – so I can’t say there was NO emotion in my Corporate real estate career.

But I can say I never heard one of my (many) franchisees squeal with delight when I showed them a prospective site for a new Taco Bell restaurant. “Oh my Gosh!! I LOOOOVE this site!!” was not the typical response. But I have heard many a prospective home buyer say such a thing. It’s one of my favorite things about this business when I see a family “fall in love with a house”.

Now “love” is a pretty strong word for a house. But I hear it all the time. I sold a house on the west side of Danville last Spring. It was a very cool (no pun intended) house that had been built environmentally renewable by the current and original owner as their “destination” home. Their final resting spot, as one client calls it. But life changes – and the couple ended up “chasing grandchildren” in the Phoenix area.

Every detail of the house was perfect and the home was built to “green” standards with several solar panels that made the power bills negligible. I remember in the final walk through my buyers (and I) kept flashing glances at each other like “WOW – that’s cool!” and “Wow – what a great feature!” or “WOW – that’s unbelievable!”.

So as we came close to closing escrow, my client kept saying to me “Gosh, I just love that house”. Now a year later, every time I see her, and ask how she is, she replies “I love my house”. How wonderful is that?!?

We are very fortunate to live in a time and place where our home is so much more than just a roof over our head. We clearly expect to “love our house” and if we don’t – typically we change what we don’t love, or we move. Even if we still love our house, but our needs have changed (move up or move down) we go on to find the bigger or smaller house we can love next.

It’s funny how when a client sells a house they’ve loved, how important it is that the new owner love it too. Why should we care? But we do. I call it MOJO – when a house has been well loved, it radiates from the very essence of that house.

Likewise, when a house has been abused by its previous owners (as with many Bank Owned or distressed homes) – the MOJO is bad. But it can be changed. Sometimes getting a kick@$% deal on a house can be enough to change the energy of a home. “Hey, the house was a little weird, but we got a GREAT deal on it and we LOVE that!!”.

The new owner of one of the houses I sold awhile back called the previous owner. She was a little nervous at first “Uh oh . . . is there something wrong?” No, the new owner had just called to say how much they loved their new home. Thank you. My client was beaming! She was so happy that the home she had lived in and loved so, was now occupied by a young family who felt the same way. All good!

I think one of the reasons I’ve been so successful in residential real estate is that I’ve been able to blend to the right proportion that mix of sophisticated sales, marketing and negotiation (from my Fortune 50 Corporate Real Estate days) with my genuine understanding and appreciation of how important it is to “love your house”.

Do you love your house? I hope you do. If you don’t, and you’re thinking about a change – call me! I LOVE my clients and LOVE to help them find their perfect home!

I said last week that I would be writing about “my favorite things” this week. Well, that beast got away from me! Once I started writing, I realized how many wonderful references I had for you and how much time it would take to pull together everyone’s phone, e-mail or website. So I am still working on that. If you are a loyal reader and have a service or recommendation for one, please forward it so I can research it and possibly include it in my “favorites” list when I finally get it compiled! nancy@nancybenvenuto.com

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