We all have to make a living.
Really, must I?
My preference is to write and to read.
But the children insist on eating. And they can’t go naked. Plus, I’m not that good on a bicycle.
Enter real estate.
Sometimes I moan and complain about being a Realtor, sure that I would have been much better suited to be a famous movie star.
Or maybe Katie Couric.
But real estate has been good to me as it gives me the flexibility to do those other things I love. We have a passionate love/hate relationship (For more about the love part, read Am I A Sleaze?). The business is constantly changing and I’m always learning something new—it’s never dull.
According to Time Magazine, loggers, roofers and electrical power-line installers have the most dangerous jobs in America. Enkivillage says that Disney characters, brew masters, and volcanologists command the most interesting professions. And if you believe US News & World Report dentists, surgeons, and lawyers make the most moola.
I propose a category for Least Boring Jobs. Real Estate would rank number one.
My typical day at the office is never typical. Anything can happen.
Case in point: The Naked Man Showing.
The property’s showing instructions said the house would be vacant because the owners would be at work.
And it seemed as if it was.
My clients and I started on the first floor of this historic Baltimore three story, marveling at the owner’s décor and the renovated, open floor plan. We turned on lights as we entered each room.
Wow, this place is great, I said.
We meandered through the second level, taking our time, and then climbed the steps to the top floor.
Maybe we should make an offer, the wife whispered to her husband.
The third floor had been redone to include a modern master bedroom suite with walk-in closets (a hard feature to find in a historic home) and a master bath (a harder feature to secure in this type of property). I opened the master bathroom door. The steam hit us, but my brain lagged a few beats behind reality.
Who’s there? A man called, his voice uncertain.
Time slowed as I looked at my clients and we turned in sync to see a wet naked man emerge through the shower fog.
The guy grabbed a towel and red-faced apologies ensued.
I’m lucky he didn’t shoot me.
No—there was another showing when gunfire would have been a more appropriate response.
It would be no exaggeration if I said I’d toured fifty houses with these people (Not on the same day, of course. Though I have shown as many as seventeen houses in a single day!). Still, we were growing weary.
We hoped the next house would be the one. The property was on a flag lot, meaning that there was a long narrow driveway that opened into a larger parcel of land. I spotted the For Sale sign and turned onto the gravel lane.
The grounds were lush and the setting private.
I couldn’t find key and lockbox on the front door.
Hold on. I’ll check the back.
The rear deck was huge and the sliding glass door was ajar.
This way guys. The seller left the back door open for us.
We stepped inside and my clients fell in love. The kitchen was spectacular. Granite countertops. Upscale appliances. Custom cabinets. And the living room was even better. Huge sun-drenched windows. Gleaming hardwood floors.
Boy, this place is a lot nicer than the pictures in the MLS, they marveled.
I said smugly, Never judge a book by its cover. Sometimes the photos in the MLS don’t do a property justice.
Again, it was in the master bathroom that the moment of truth occurred. There were two sinks instead of the one I clearly remembered in the photographs. Like waking slowly from a dream, it occurred to me why the house didn’t look like the pictures online.
Because it wasn’t on the internet and we were in the wrong house.
This house was not for sale!
My heartbeat increased. I was sure I heard police sirens in the distance. We high-tailed it out of there. (The property I was actually scheduled to show was farther down the gravel lane and not nearly as nice as the one I had broken into). Sadly, it was not the one either.
My job is never dull—naked men, breaking and entering—the list could go on and on. It’s all just another day at work for me in the wild west of real estate!
We all have to make a living, right? While I’m not a movie star or a morning talk show host, I am never bored. Real estate keeps my life interesting. I hope you are as lucky in your typical day at work!
Thoughtful Food: Super Easy Chicken Salad
1 seasoned rotisserie chicken, cooked and picked (skin removed)
1.5 cups of real mayonnaise
½ head of celery, chopped
1 cup dried cranberries
Mix all ingredients. Refrigerate for at least one hour. Serve on bed of spring greens.
Thought For The Week:
Work hard. Have fun. Make a difference.
What’s the funniest or most interesting thing that’s happened to you on the job?