You have a multi million dollar property. You want to sell. Suddenly a series of must do's need applying to the real estate marketing.Stagers, repaint this, rip and replace those shrubs, fix the concrete driveway, find a granite counter top, etc. Getting ready for selling and what is expected for this calibre property. The compensation for taking the costly, critcial steps in this grand estate sale are all part of the bottom line for getting it noticed, marketing, sold. You as the broker may have six properties that you personally listed and pretty much work round the clock on just those places. Now reach forward and turn the channel to rural America. No..it's not Hee Haw or Green Acres but the real estate show you are watching for the same process of say a Clark Kent mild mannered 3 bedroom ranch is vastly different. One property is no better than the other. One costs far more and requires different handling.
The modest ranch is just as important a sale. But your buyers and sellers for it do not serve caviar, drink special vintage wine from 1947 carefully stored in a special area of the cellar. They do not have a polo course or clay surface tennis court in the backyard. No bowling alleys, shooting ranges, libraries, butler pantries, media rooms, great rooms in this 42 x 24 rancher. There are not full time gardeners, chaffeur, cooks, house cleaners or social planners who live here on the grounds. The local weddings are held at a church, a local Elks Club or Knights of Columbus Hall...not on the 1200 acre estate.
The only fountains are not grecian ones with waterfalls by the rose garden. They are orange drink ones borrowed from the local McDonalds.
The owners of the simple, solid, sturdy ranch bought the place with a dollar down FmHA (Farmers Home Administration) and the wear and tear show. It has just as much heart, class in it's own simple way as the showy castle. It speaks in a silent, family value main street America sort of way. It is the rule not the exception. The owners are not Blue Bloods, they are not Red Necks. Like the porridge Goldilocks stumbled on to during her breaking and entering spree..they are just right, in the middle.
No home property stagers called in, no funds for a gardner, painter. Boils down to advice on removing unneeded furniture, items just parked in the garage or cellar. And other more simple laundry list items covered. Clean, clean and clean some more said in a nice sort of way. With the analogy of putting the hubcaps back on, new mats and a wax job before you park the car out front with the orange, white and black For Sale sign propped up on the dash for all to see. Put light bulbs where they are missing or dead. And all hands on deck to scrub those decks. Mow the lawn, trim some shurbs or low lying limbs and we're ready to roll. As a real estate broker, take the best images possible and get out of the car. Don't just do curb shots. Write copy that does not puff up the place in to something it is not. But solid, quality construction and practical aspect of how low the operating costs are become "notes" put to the song of this place. Starter place, a property to buy and rent out. Explore the options but from a down to earth practical approach that matches the property. Not trying to make it sound like a palatial home designed to be bought by a select few. This home is your meat and potato, model "T" that is the staple of the majority of folks out in the rural areas some of us serve.
So when real estate brokers in urban areas post gloom and doom posts about a depressed market and how hard their sellers are having it tackling a $700,000 or higher mortgage, I hope John Q Public knows it is not like that everywhere. Rural America has always lived like it was in a recession or preparing for one. It goes back to life on the farm where most of us were farmers. Taught frugality for survival. Have one Bonanza year because of a big crop and / or disaster somewhere else due to weather that wipes out that state's crop. Then the next two years, don't spend money unless you have to and weather out the storm. And if you broke even you had a good year. Get to farm again.
That attitude could sound hokey to someone that could not live with out their Lexus, their Porsche, or oyster perpetual presidential model Rolex. We are a nation that is spoiled, becoming soft, feeling entitled, special and the center of attention. Not long ago, we were all taught it was about others..helping them not ourselves. Material items and lots of them replaced the small daily joys that cost nothing. Sitting with a grandparent sampling fresh squeesh lemonade and grammy's fig squares in a porch swing and talking, listening, learning about your family. Lessons in life from someone 80 years old that has been thru thick and thin.
But in rural America, it is not just Larry the Cable Guy who thinks his F-150 Ford that is payed for, but three shades of red and one section just primer is a classic ride. Rural America knows how to survive, heat with wood, make home made holiday gifts you can eat, that you need. Money is not in the equation as much. Less of it around to interfere with the raising of your family. No one is spoiled. Money is not used to impress. Local bean suppers, car wash fund raisers for this or that needed in the community or to help a cancer patient. Following your local high school teams to the state playoffs. And family...that is what is key, important. That little three bedroom ranch is the back bone of the country and the owners of it have a voice of reason, common sense and frugality that needs to be heard to get this country back on it's feet and healthy again. Disenfranchisement may cause more polarity of Country Mouse and City Mouse..especially if differences on governmental spending that spills over from personal spending habits grow hotter, more distinct and volatile.