Home » Writing » It’s Not Personal, It’s Strictly Business…

It’s Not Personal, It’s Strictly Business…

Such an exciting time ahead of me.  Okay, maybe a tad stressful as well but I’d rather focus on the good parts, if you know what I mean.  A perfect time to analyze my “stuff” and see what really means something to me and must stay and what can be let go.  Or, a time where everything gets shoved in boxes to be dealt with later!  How about a mix of both… that way I won’t spend too much time with the preparations.

The agent has been met, the price established and, before the ‘For Sale’ sign can be hammered into the newly exposed, spring-stink grass, the ‘home stager” must be met.  I consider myself lucky that part of the commission I shall be paying to sell this behemoth includes the services of said stager.  If not, I had contemplated, maybe, in investing in the services of one.  Because, you know, a different set of eyes and all that.

Well damn.   The doorbell rings and there stands Nathalie,  standing at five foot-nothing, wearing jeans and boots – “no, no, please”, I insist, “keep them on.  I didn’t wash the floor and I have a dog.  Would much rather you not end up with slippers for socks.”  She goes back to her car – very nice car, so business must be good – and gets her sneakers.  Hands me her coat and with a handshake that would make a 6’2″ man proud got down to business.

Not a stroll around the house to see what’s to be dealt with, first, oh no.  Immediately, she tells me to get a pad and pen so I can take notes.  Notes?  I ain’t got time to take notes!  My 5’9″ legs are practically having trouble keeping up with her!  She has walked into the dining room, after having passed through the living room.  Immediatelly told me to take down the two paintings (sorry, Richard, apparently Mick and I have no taste so your lovely works of art don’t belong there).  She made me take one from the dining room to placed in the living room.  Told me to remove the hooks and nails we were not using and kept on going.   And so it went.  “Remove this, store that.  Do you really need to keep that there?  Try to find an extension cord so you can move your water fountain.  Do you really need to plug it in?  Seriously room-temp water is better for you.  OK.  Remove all pictures of your family.  OK.. Take that picture and put it here.  Don’t forget to remove the nails.”  Takes notes?  I think not.

“Yes.  OK. That’s good.  No, this will NOT do.  I really don’t like those curtains.  Do you really need them?”

“Well, yes, I do, when the sun shines, I can’t see my computer screen.”

“Well, speaking of that.  Can you get rid of that other desk and move this one over there?  Can we move some of this stuff downstairs? It is so important to have access to the windows.  They must be free of stuff.  No?  Then remove this.  And put this over there.”

Fuck no!  Jesus… I am officially spinning.

“Let’s go upstairs, shall we?  Ok.  Let’s move this bureau and bring that plant over here.”  OK… this one, I gotta admit, I really like.  “And make sure you remove all that stuff from your nightstands.  And get a lamp for that one.  It’s too dark.  Move that picture over to centre it.  Why is it like that?  And make sure you clean up that bookcase.”

“Since I sold my son’s bed, I figured we should move his desk into the guest bedroom and bring that bed in here.  What do you think?”

“Yes, good idea.”

Woot!  I had a good idea….

And then we enter the eldest’s room.  “Ummm…”

“Don’t worry.  He knows all the stuff has to come down from the walls.  And he has to clean up the space.  It will be done.”

“Does he really need that desk?”

“I can’t say.  Will work on him for that one.”

Let’s go down into the basement, shall we?”

Huffing and puffing, I follow.

She comes down the stairs, looks at the new vinyl flooring on the one side.  “Before you even think of it. No.  That was a bitch to remove.  We are NOT removing this side.  I had it cleaned.  I know it still looks ‘meh’ but it will remain.  By the way, I figure we should bring this couch  back over and that table.”

“You don’t want to bring the TV back here?”

“No.  I don’t trust the kids to make another mess.”

She looks at me disapprovingly.  “I sill think….”

“No.”

“OK.  But still, remove those posters and maybe move that one over there.”

“OK.  I still find it odd that people want to see a house that appears totally unlived in.  That there isn’t a family here.  To me, it makes no sense that there wouldn’t be at lease one family picture.”

“Statistics have shown that, that’s what works.  So, Madame, my work here is done.  Good luck on the sale of your house.”

Another crushing handshake and she is gone.

Whew!  I sid down and try to get my bearings.  I am now tripping over my antique chairs that I bought to go with my antique table that I must now hide.  I am supposed to make my kitchen look like I never use it.  I must store all my artwork that was not considered “fitting” and box all family pictures, no matter how cute.

I’m hoping, that with all this work, my house will be attractive to potential buyers.  Till then, I’m to roll up my sleeves and do what needs to be done.  There is some selling, re-organizing, moving, shifting, clearing, sorting, schlepping… I’m exhausted just thinking about it!

 

 

70 thoughts on “It’s Not Personal, It’s Strictly Business…

  1. Cappo di tutti capi,

    Interesting that you use this, for more reasons than the one.
    Well . . for the one thing . . . Godfather! The classic non-part three Godfather! Props to you for the mad respect!
    Also, Michael uttered this line which will live in glorious cinematic infamy before taking out Sollozzo and McCluskey. So let’s just say that from this point forward, anyone else who steps foot in your crib best be bringing friendly drinks and plenty of understanding. Or else!
    And bravo(!) to you for using a video featuring Michael C as the prelude to your post on staging su casa. Because really, it’s one future boss (Michael) and one total boss (you) making plans to clean house. And if it means kicking a little ass . . so be it.

    I love this!

    Signed,

    Bronx Boss- Marco Antonio

    PS- Leave the notes . . take the Cannolis.

    • Bronx!
      I knew you’d appreciate this little intro 😉 Actually, I had the longer version, lasting a good five minutes but figured it got off track from my own message 😛
      And yeah…. clean house – not quite in the same manner – yet! That’ll depend on my soldiers, if yanno what I mean…. 😉
      Q-Boss – Dalio

      P.S. Leave the cannoli – I’m having people over!

  2. I’ve always found moving to be an excellent time to reassess my collection of “stuff”. And yet, somehow, a ridiculous number of boxes of obviously useless stuff came with me on my last move — boxes which have not been used or sometimes even opened in six years. SIGH. I wish you luck in sorting through all of your stuff. What an interesting experience, to have your house staged like that! I’ve heard about it, but never such detail — thank you for sharing. I can imagine me kicking myself thinking, “Wow you’re right, it does look better that way — why didn’t I have it that way the last six years?” Lol!

    • I won’t lie. There were a few “move arounds” that I thought… dang… why didn’t think of that?
      I would not have paid for a stager but since once was supplied… what the hell. Let’s see what happens? Lawsy…
      As for stuff. Oh. Em. Gee. Do I have STUFF!! Time to do a serious purge and let go. Let go. I said LET GO!!! 🙂

      • It is hard to let go, I know! Just don’t make the mistake I made and end up making a bunch of rushed decisions at the last minute. Yes, it was good to purge, but in the heat of the moment, I threw out or gave away things that I wish I’d kept.

        • That’s why my options will be to box and bring and before being placed, it will be decided if it stays. Don’t want to make that mistake!

    • Oh… I think having the manuscript critiqued is even harder. That’s your writing, your baby. (And one day, I shall find out, hopefully!)

      • The writer’s created baby, sure.. But when we raise children, do we do so alone? No, we send them out into the world, where peers and teachers and various others trim them, help to mould them, help polish them. By the time our children are fully fledged adults, they’ve been subjected to a whole load of tweaks and critiques. Of course, just as we flinch when a child’s teacher passes a negative comment about our angel, so we flinch at the critiquer’s harsh pen.

  3. Ohhhh Dale, I feel you! We just went through the exact same thing! I thought my husband was going to hurl our stager out the front door after the first five minutes. I sat down and cried after she left…felt like I had just been pilloried in the public square. We have spent the last week or so ‘denuding’ our home, and it does, indeed, now look like no one lives here. I find it heartbreaking, but if that’s what we need to do to sell, so be it. Good luck to you guys!

  4. Dear Dale,

    I read somewhere that moving is among the top ten stressors. I feel for you, but don’t envy you. Lots of memories tied up in the house, besides the ordeal of having to stage it for sale. I’m here for you, my friend.

    Love the way you share it. Well done. Your stress is our entertainment. Hang in there, mon amie.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

  5. Ugh! I remember, when I thought I might have to sell my house, the realtor walking me through it. She suggested everything from buying new ceiling fans-because God for bid they be white-to pulling all pictures down from the wall. I remember thinking it was all just too overwhelming. I have to believe that the right buyer will be able to envision themselves in your house without you making yourself crazy over it.

    • Right? And frankly, are you not looking for a home? So much for selling the memories…
      It sure isn’t easy to be told you basically have no taste!!
      So, yes, some suggestions, yes, others, not gonna happen…

  6. Oh, what a merry moment I just spent…. and I’m still dizzy from that wild Beatles’ spin, those were the times!
    I’m often told that I’d make an excellent home-stager but I think, after reading this, I would be wahayyyy too soft on peeps. I could never tell them to rip off all posters, pictures and I’d take hours and hours just telling them in kind words that it might be better, if they’d (in your case) put a cheap rug over a terrible vinyl or other floor… 😉 And then I have one of the main sins in my bones like nothing: I LOVE collecting – times are changing, fashions are changing, heck, I am changing all the time – mostly in width if not in wisdom…. and then, zack, I CANNOT believe I’ve ended up AGAIN with this and that! Or else, I get nightmares thinking of How on earth shall I shift my ca 1800 books and nearly 2000 DVDs – each and every one much beloved and ‘I shall read that book again as well as watch that super film again’…. while getting blinder and blinder, fully well knowing I shall be looking at a Kindle soon and needing an ever larger screen to view the films!
    But GOOD ON YOU to have taken that decision and while you want to go easy on you, your memories and your personal preferences, the ‘petite’ with the mind of steel and the handshake of a tree-feller just MIGHT know what she was doing?! 🙂
    Good luck for a sale – I still have this hurdle to approach, and it’s already now doing my head in!
    And HAPPY EASTER, all the same. Hope you’re doing better than me. I’ve been searching the one trunk with all the precious Easter decorations for 30’ – it was the very last one and it wasn’t where I looked for it. Had lost the will to decorate by that time. Am now happily sitting amongst my many bouquets of spring flowers, most of the stuff is still (and will stay) packed away but the mind is at ease.

    • So very glad you enjoyed my crazy😜
      And I do feel you. I can’t get rid of my books and cd’s. And I never listen to cd’s…
      It must be so hard to feel your sight slowly disappear. My mother has glaucoma and has lost peripheral vision. At least she can still read – her escape.
      I think you have to be tough when you come into people’s homes. If you got emotional, you’d get nothing done!
      Happy Easter to you! We just decided, the sisters and I, to have Easter dinner! Nothing had been planned till 3 pm this afternoon…
      I don’t do the decorations…

      • I have been cooking several part-meals. Tomorrow Easter, after a church service, we shall have an indoor-picnic. Such fun, we all bring food and drinks, wine and songs along and share everything we’ll be bringing. An I mustn’t complain having heaped so much work on my shoulders, as it was ME with that glorious idea….
        It will be much more fun than cooking a lamb gigot and then scrape and clean the oven for hours afterwards 🙂

        • We decided, yesterday, to gather at my sister’s, each one bringing something to the table. And since it was my son’s birthday yesterday and my niece’s birthday exactly one week before, I am making two desserts – key lime pie for Iain and a Sachertorte for Sabrina.
          Happy Easter, Kiki!

          • We had a most enjoyable, glorious time….. everything was eaten (well nearly but everything I made….), lots of great discussions fun laughter – very Eastery day!!! Hope yours went equally well for you – and I shall never be a baker as I’m not a ‘dessert person’ but I DO admire those who are/do/can 😉

          • So did we. We ended up being the three sisters, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews, my mom and her beau… So nice when all of us manage to get together!
            Ah… my bloody frozen key lime pie was put in the fridge (my fault) so was actually key lime soup…

  7. Wow! I am exhausted even thinking of the work ahead of you. When I moved out from our house in Chicago I left my husband in it and moved into a two bedroom apartment near my sons in Cleveland. I moved only what I had brought with me when we got married. He had an incredible amount of stuff he was unable to part with and I dreaded ever having to get ready for a move with him. We had an agreeable separation and best of all I left him to his clutter.

    • Seriously. Thankfully François will store some of my stuff in his garage, so I don’t have to worry about where to hide… And quite frankly, I won’t necessarily do everything that bossy broad suggested 😉
      My friend’s mother told her husband (they turned 92 and 90 this year) that she wanted to die first because there was no way she wanted to be left with his stuff! All that taken care of as their kids moved them out of their home and brought them closer to them so, they dealt with it all 😉

      • Happy ending for your friends parents. Great that Francois is giving you room to store stuff to organize later. As they say, a third option is required of any good question.

  8. You did far better than i would have. I would have got very defensive and annoyed. I know the stag we s know what they’re doing, but still.. so little tact involved. Good luck with your move. It’s so hard…

  9. This is so interesting, and exciting for you! A ‘home stager’ what the ? Sounds very bossy ! We have TV programs about how to make your home more salable. But I don’t know of people doing this as a regular job. Good luck with the move and mind the estate agents / realtors don’t rinse you on commission. Hope it all goes smoothly. Happy Easter 🐇💜💝❤️🐰🐰🐇🐥🐤🐣💜

  10. At the risk of sounding old and crotchety, I don’t understand why we have to “stage” our houses when we’re selling them. It’s as if people lack all imagination when it comes to looking at a house and seeing not only what is there, but what it could be if we make it ours. It occurs to me as I’m noting my displeasure over staging that I’ve never liked or been inspired to buy a house that has been obviously staged. Sounds like the statistics are not with me on this one, though.

    This is so wonderfully written, Dale. Been there, done this enough times that I have some idea of what you’re going through. I hope all the work on the staging of the house does the trick for you. Good luck. 🙂

    • I feel EXACTLY like you, Robin. This new vogue bugs the piss out of me. And sadly, if I want to sell sooner rather than later, I’ll stage the damn thing.

      Glad you enjoyed the read! 😊

    • She’s short enough to enter one, anyway… 😉 I dunno. Does he have mismatched paintings? Too many chairs? A too-tall plant frozen in the middle of the table? She will not go easy on him… just sayin’

      • Holy inuksuk Bat Women, Might be too late for the Igloo. But am sure all will go well with your house. Am sure your home oozes with character, given the one that lives there.

        • LOL! I first read Holy Muckluck! Might be indeed… they are are calling for shite starting Wednesday… Fingers crossed they have erred on the texture of the stuff falling from the sky…
          And that is very schweet of you to say. But, alas, some of the character comes from two young adult men – and it ain’t perty…

  11. Pingback: I’m a Fire Sign Dammit – Stop Trying to Put Out My Flame! | A Dalectable Life

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