Monday, November 30, 2009

Does snow make everything ok?

to this ? picture courtesy of It's lovely! I'll take it!

Does snow make everything ok? Remember the first heavy snowfall of the year. You're out walking with warm mitten clad hands, toasty boots and a gut full of cocoa or perhaps a nice cognac for those so inclined. As you walk you can hear the crunch-crunch-crunch of snow underfoot.

You look around everything appears clean and pretty. Even the broken down house on the corner looks better, the garbage in the yard hidden away by the cover of a dreamy blanket.

If you live in B.C., it rains the next day and all the crud comes back up to the surface and looks twice as bad as it did before. Maybe the rain made it dirty, or maybe on some level you feel betrayed by the sudden and uncontrollable image shift.

Either way it is just snow and a dirty yard. If my mom were out walking, which is pretty unlikely as she hates the cold, she'd just see snow and hate it for what it is. That's because she likes the hot South African sun and can't relate to our Canadian winters.

But, it is all perspective. Especially in the current real estate and rental market.

That brings me back round to that broken down house. If you want to sell it or rent it, you need to make it warm and inviting. Tidy it up until it shines and find a way to add value to it - for both the prospective tenant or buyer. There are a lot of listings on the market now and tenants have a pick of the best and challenge landlords to lower the rents - which many feel forced to do.

When you look at that same paint peeling, rotten fenced, broken windowed home from an investors perspective - you can see opportunity. An opportunity to help a seller, and possibly a tenant, find a place to live in once you have done the needed repairs to turn that house into a home.

I guess I answered my own question. Snow can make a dirty house clean and you can make a crappy house a home with the right attitude and ability to see what can be instead of what sometimes is.

Now, if I could only find a way to make my mom think snow is great....

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