I should have known better

April 1, 1978. You think I would know better. It’s not that I am superstitious, but I thought to myself that a guy with a Master’s degree, married with two kids and fresh off a 4 year stint as a city planning analyst really could start a new career on any day of the year.  That’s the day I started my full-time career as a real estate agent. That’s  the day I  thought  I am my own boss, the master of my own destiny, the sky’s the limit,  and the money would come rolling in.  I don’t think I have to tell you the significance of the April first date. It’s not just the fact that I am a  pretty gullible guy and you could tell me that the moon is made of green cheese (I prefer provolone) Let’s just say I am now  100% died in the wool credulous and make a real effort to verify every statement made that might affect my sense of  awe of mere existence but also go to great lengths to  dodge black cats, not to walk under ladders, get real concerned when I break a mirror, and wear the same tee-shirt and baseball cap when the Phillies are on a winning streak. This explains their early exit from this year’s playoffs, since I varied my routine and changed my apparel watching game 5. Like I said I should have known better and It’s just that I don’t want to take any unnecessary chances if confronted with quasi truths working hand in hand with the gods of dark probability.

I was fooled. Fooled into thinking that I only needed knowledge, some start-up  money and if could learn how to be  tenacious I could make it in this business.  Well those attributes certainly are important but a little luck sure can be important. Luck in the sense of being lucky to have the right mentors, the right manager, the right company and  a family that will back you all the way when you move ahead based on your gut and the fact that they didn’t have much say in the matter, and most importantly, being lucky enough to have clients that liked your work and now  will recommend you to other folks.

Well here I am now. 33 years later.  Survived 1980 and 18% interest rates, and now 2007 – present, the longest real estate depression since the great depression.  I am lucky enough that I am still here, still selling real estate, still learning and still working with the greatest clients in the world.  And of course still lucky enough to have the greatest family in the world that supports me 100%.

Oh yeh and by the way, make no mistake about it. We are in a depression in real estate. Don’t believe those talking heads in the media who are telling you that we have bottomed out and are on our way back. For every pin head who says we are out of it, there are two more who think the Apocalypse is around the corner. There are a lot of people hurting out there and they need our help. They have lost jobs, values in their home, credit and faith in our system.  What they need is someone with some knowledge on how to keep their home in this market, how to refinance their existing mortgage, how to get help in credit repair and maybe someone just to listen and give them some hope. And let’s not forget the buyers out there. A lot of them are frightened to death. They have heard the bad news and the stories of never being able to save enough down money, the autocratic mortgage process and the fear of being scammed. If they are lucky, they have a trusted advisor who can navigate the barriers with them. You know people like the folks I work with, knowledgeable, tenured and ethical.  But it’s going to take some time. If we are lucky enough, we might come out of this a little bit better and stronger for the experience.  Knock on Wood.

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