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  • Writer's pictureShaneka Thompson

Selling During the Pandemic

I sold my first home! I sold my home during a pandemic.....(side eye). This was not planned. It was never my intentions to sell at all. Let me tell you my story and stress lol.

I purchased my first home at the ripe age of 25 because I was tired of paying rent and rent kept increasing. I was on a Military location in Biloxi Mississippi when I decided to purchase so my friends technically bought my house....(laughing). In April, I received a nice little email from my property manager stating my tenants were leaving at the end of May. So immediately I wanted to review the lease because they were breaking the lease, right! No! My property manager had not renewed their lease on a year by year basis, they were on a month to month. I was unaware! Completely unaware that they had not signed a new lease since 2015!!! What the heck! I panicked because we were now at a time where tenants were not paying rent and I have another mortgage!! What do I do!! Repairs, rent, mortgage....Call upon the most high! Shaneka you need to sell.

Now of course, I knew the market for buyers at the time was up in the air. All agents, lenders, investors and banks were on edge because there was no way to tell in April how COVID-19 would affect buyers and sellers. I had to try selling my property because people were being laid off and places were closed and renting to someone new may not work out. That's it! That settles it, my decision was made. Call all contractors.

I was going to allow my property manager to sell my home because it would only be right. Even though they did not fully disclosed to me on the nature of the lease. They were only on strike one. Strike two came when I actually told them I wanted to sell and Inwas told that although they had the property for 6 years they couldn't negotiate with me and that if I do most would be reluctant to show the property. I knew what that meant. As a Realtor, I know my stuff and I assume they forgot I was a Realtor so I went with a new Realtor.

I knew that there was going to be work that needed to be completed because the tenant was in the home for 6 years. Besides minor repairs nothing had been updated before I moved out in 2014. I was taken back when my friend did a walk-through. New floors, new siding (I was only planning for this), new landscaping and new paint was obvious. Now as a Realtor, I know what FHA and VA loans were looking for as requirements to close. I was in military town so more likely I would have a military buyer and to eliminate all that during an inspection, I just put the items that needed to be fixed on the to do list.

And here we go! Let me say doing renovations from another state is so frustrating because you cannot see everything through a picture on a phone.

Painter: Nice guy. He painted all my baseboards the color of the wall. I asked him to redo it and he wanted to charge me more money. Nope!! I let him go.

Floor Installation: Lowes lost my order. Sent my contractor to another location to get my floors. I am so lucky he was patient because I was furious. I am in another state and there was nothing I could do but be on the phone. My contractor was amazing. He did my baseboard painting at no extra cost and also other small jobs.

Landscaper: Horrible!! He got the job done after I showed up to my house to check on all my updates. My yard was not completed. I had two rose beds and three other flower beds that needed weeds pulled, bushes cut and installed. I paid him and it looked a mess. I was so furious I had to have my friend talk to him cause I couldn't utter words. He fixed it by the time pictures were taken at 10am.

Lighting: In all my homes, I replace lighting. My lighting should have been okay to sell a home but when I walked in my home that was not the case. My entry way lighting was missing, the kitchen light was broken and bathroom vanity lights were out. Ughh!! There goes more money!!

Siding: My contractor for the siding was amazing. That is all! I loved everything he did and he included my backdoor which was broken and paint for he garage door.

My Realtor: She was the truth! Sometimes working with a Realtor when you are a Realtor is tough because we think we know everything. But other states work different. You must understand that as a Realtor. I let her lead and my house was sold in under 3 days!!! Whew!!

It sold! Over asking price and over what I thought I would get! Me and my sorority sister staged it! I appreciate her so much for her hospitality and going out to check on my house. Coordinating contractors and everything. She's a saint!!

Thank you to my Realtor Ketra, my contractors, my friends who listen to my issues and my Broker. This was a humbling experience and I understand the hesitation of sellers when they are selling.

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