Case Study - Listen To The Signs

Case Study - Listen To The Signs

Supporting Seniors in the Sale of Their Long-time Homes: Handling Things and Honoring Their Decision Making

When Roger and Margaret Smith decided it was time to move from their home of 40 years in Woodside, the process of packing up and moving a lifetime of belongings, managing the move to Napa, and getting their home ready to be put up for sale seemed impossible. They hired Chris, based on a trusted recommendation. He was able to handle everything for them and sell their house in record time with multiple offers well over the asking price.

Time to Move

Margaret and Roger Smith had lived in their Woodside Glens home for 40 years. They raised their family there; Roger was a pastor at a local church,
and they were involved in the community in many ways. The couple couldn’t imagine living anywhere else and
thought they would stay in their home until the end of their days.

Then one day Margaret tripped in the garden, badly hurting her knee. “When one gets older, one gets warning signs and it was a major warning sign,” said Margaret. The Smiths quickly came to the realization that to “stay in place” was a fantasy. The neighborhood was changing with more young families moving in. Their home needed repairs and was no longer comfortable. And their two adult sons were far away, in Napa and Redding. It was time to move.

Problems: Years of “Stuff,” Timing, and Finances

Although they knew they needed to move, the thought of everything involved in the process was overwhelming.

“I wouldn’t say that I’m a hoarder. Let’s say I’m a collector and I had accumulated quite a bit of material. We had rooms full of stuff and something had to be done with it all. One of our biggest challenges, and I couldn’t imagine how it could be done, was to somehow get rid of things,” said Roger.

Soon after Margaret’s accident, they came across the perfect apartment in a retirement community in Napa. But they had to move quickly to get it, and they needed to sell their Woodside home to finance the move.

Most of their savings were tied up in their home. Doing the maintenance work to get it ready to sell would cost money that wasn’t readily available. The problems of timing and financing seemed insurmountable.

Trust, Timing, and Overcoming Obstacles

The Smiths had been working with housing referral services specialists who recommended Chris Iverson. “That recommendation gave Chris credibility. They trusted him and we trusted them, “ said Roger.

During their first meeting, Chris impressed them with his punctuality, local market knowledge, and can-do attitude.

“Downsizing from a house to a one-bedroom apartment, especially in the time we needed to do it seemed impossible, but Chris made it seem easy,” said Roger. “Chris could line us up with people who specialized in everything we needed to have done.”

The real clincher in deciding to hire Chris to sell their house was that he had helped a neighbor in a similar situation solve her problems and successfully sell her house.

“We’d known Karen Olson for a long period of time she just lived four houses away. We knew something about her house situation, the possibilities, and the problems. Chris had dealt with those and he had done a commendable job there,” said Roger.

Getting it All Done, On Time, and Getting the Most Money for Their House

When Chris met with the Smiths, he asked them about their timing and financial goals. He helped them figure out how much money they needed to get out of the sale of their house in order to make their move. Pricing was tricky since a similar house next door had recently gone on the market at $1,050,000 and sold below the asking price of $1,010,000. After much discussion, they decided on a sales price range of $1 million to $1.2 million.

Chris connected the Smiths with people who specialized in helping seniors downsize their homes. “Chris told us to take what you want and the rest will disappear,” said Roger. “The concept of just taking what you want and using, instead of sorting through things you don’t want, was a new concept,” said Margaret. “But when we left that garage, full of unfinished projects and things we were never going to deal with, it felt so good to leave it all behind.”

After Chris profiled a target buyer for the home, he discussed what improvements would make financial sense with that buyer in mind. Then he arranged to have the house painted inside and out and have the yard cleaned up. Chris was able to use his connections to get all the work done for the Smiths with the vendors agreeing to be paid after escrow closed, giving the Smiths the financial comfort to make their move before the house sold.

A Sale in Record Time at a Top Price

The Smiths decided to sell their home on August 1. Twenty days later they were in their new home. Their Woodside home went on the market for $1.1 million on September 5. On September 16, it sold for $1.2 million with multiple offers.
“Chris was market-testing the price throughout the whole process,” said Roger. “He listed the house at a reasonable price and then kept working to move it up. “
“I think Chris did magic, frankly!” said Margaret. “I think he worked really, really hard to get that price. And it was more than we thought we could get. What can I say? He’s amazing!”

Advice for Other Seniors

“If I had to give advice to others in our situation, I would tell them to call Chris and move now. Even though moving now was difficult, it would have been so much worse if there was just one of us or if one of us was disabled,” said Margaret. “The people most grateful are our two sons who are so appreciative that we made the move ourselves instead of leaving it up to them.”
“Looking back it’s unbelievable that we were able to do what we did in such a short time,” said Roger. “We never could have done it without Chris. He was supportive without being intrusive. He honored our decision-making and very competently held our hand all along the way. If I were asked to give out stars, I would give Chris five stars.”

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Chris Iverson has worked in the real estate industry for over 18 years and has amassed a renowned class of clientele and unmatched experience.

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