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Saturday, January 22, 2022

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The realities of real estate

Words // Michelle Reimann, Cairns Property Office

“We’re running 10 minutes behind – see you soon!” read the text message. I had just arrived at my next listing ready to meet the landscapers to see what they could do to turn the neglected patio of this two-bedroom unit into its selling feature.

I let myself into the unit to wait, standing under the fan in desperate motion, trying to move out the wreak of cat urine soaked into the carpet of the second bedroom. I cast my eyes to the numerous jobs fixed by the handyman to make this property buyer friendly.

What else, I thought to myself. The landscaping, replace the carpet, and repaint the whole unit – that ought to do it. It’s not every listing that we hire various tradies to get it ready for the market, but in this case we knew the extra effort would pay off for the seller.

The landscapers arrive, and we discuss potential remedies for the forsaken backyard that would bring it to life without breaking the bank. The usual questions that follow a real estate agent ensue – “How’s the market?” They ask.

I give the standard but friendly response which in large part consists of revealing oneself as being busy (true), how hot the Cairns market is (also true) topped off by a couple of relevant real estate stats.

Then comes the flyaway comment perfectly punctuated by a dismissive wave of the hand – “Anyone can sell a property in this market – just chuck a For Sale sign out the front!”

I thought back to the house where I scrubbed stains left by years of old termite trails. This unit, where I held my breath while giving the interstate seller a video walk-through of the putrid urine fragrance. The daily emotional highs of ecstasy of a seller wanting to list their house with me, only to find myself in the depths of depression before the day has ended because a buyer I’d qualified hadn’t told the whole truth about their financial situation.

I smiled briefly and decided not to respond. Just like the tip of an iceberg, real estate has its unseen challenges just below the surface – it’s an extraordinary career because of its quiet complexities, and all the more satisfying when we have those little wins.

Connect // cpo.com.au

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