Before covid, my weeks were sometimes organized around the ‘Events’ tab on Facebook. In my business, networking and being out in the community is important. My routine was to look at events on Sunday evening or Monday morning and see which ones were coming up so I could make plans to attend. Until quarantine!
It was sad to see that events disappeared, then began to reappear as virtual. I hate virtual meetings, I want to hug people, not air high-five them. Then as time went on, the events began to fill up again.
Now, I love seeing all of the holiday events coming. People are coming back together and we are remembering how important our friendships are. We lost a lot of people over the past 2 years. We should never take those relationships for granted again, regardless of how deep or not to deep they were.
This past week, our county dedicated a courtroom to a man that I absolutely loved. He and I were not close by any means, and he only knew me in passing to a degree, but I watched him over the years and knew he was truly a good man.
Judge Cude would come to Decatur Conference Center, where I worked, every week for Rotary Club. He walked in the farthest door to get his steps in, and was always cheerful. Even though he was 1 of only 2 judges we have in Wise County to hear criminal and civil cases, he still made time to be in church, attend and work in Rotary club and serve in the community.
I can clearly remember seeing him at the annual Lawn & Home show, with his Rotary T-shirt on, helping vendors and visitors, always putting a smile on their face. You would often see him fast walking on the square, with his little fedora on, getting his steps in.
When his daughter was getting married, he came into DCC carrying things for the reception, patiently following his wife. He went into the room, put the supplies down on a table and immediately went to the dance floor. He began dancing around, arms in the air, singing the music, and pretending to hold his precious girl. I had to just stop and watch, it touched my heart so. He looked at me and told me he had to practice because he didn’t want to mess it up. I could see the love he had for her, then I teared up and left the room.
Part of my job at DCC was to get photos and post on social media. He had stepped out of his Rotary meeting and was in the hall talking to two men, so I snapped some pics and went back to my desk. When I opened the photos, I quickly realized they were plain clothes sheriff’s deputies, and he was signing a warrant. It was a reminder, that even though he was always jovial and light-hearted, he carried a serious level of authority.
Judge Cude always took time to visit with me, regardless of where he was. And for that I am truly grateful.
I heard a story once, of a man who had been arrested, and instead of making the man feel like a loser, Judge Cude addressed him with respect and treated him very well. Then the Judge took the time to encourage the young man and it made him literally choose to begin making better choices in life. All because of Judge Cude's kindness.
Late last year, when news of his passing was posted in the daily update, you could almost hear the breaking of every heart in the county. It was a devastating loss.
While many of you reading this may not live in Wise County, and may not have known this man, this is what living in rural Texas is like. You can find men and women like this everywhere if you look. If you can’t find any where you are, then become one. Become someone that will cause people to remember you with a warm heart. Become someone that changes lives just by encouraging them. Be someone who makes people smile when they see you and they know you care about them.
To be honest, this wasn’t the direction I was going to go with this newsletter. But I remembered this amazing man and just had to make this tribute. I want to be like Judge Cude. I want to make a positive difference in the lives of everyone I meet.
Now I’m going to start looking at the events tab of Facebook and purpose to get back into the community and make a difference in someone’s day. There are a lot of great holiday events coming up! I hope to see you there and I won’t ever take those chance relationships for granted again. They change my life.
Many people often contemplate making changes this time of year and the reasons are as varied as the people considering the change. Before the recent problems in the world, most people based the desire to move, with the exception of job changes, on upsizing, downsizing, or just a shift their style of living.
Now, some people are leaving what they have always known, for what they are hoping will be a better situation. Others are simply wanting to relocate closer to family or friends. I’ve also known some who are wanting to be more self-sufficient, then others just want a milder climate.
Whatever the reason, we all know it is wise to investigate before you decide. Here are a few of my thoughts on the subject.
What you may not realize is that most realtors are more than happy to help you with that decision. Find a realtor, local to your area, if you are going to sell. The ask them to help you locate a good realtor in the place you are moving to. You would seek advice for financial changes such as investing or retirement, shouldn’t you seek the same level of professional advice in a significant real estate decision?
Look local first. A local realtor can market the property appropriately, and they understand the area and the nuances or issues that could arise because of your location. When selling, many folks want to try to sell the property themselves, however they often find themselves ill-equipped for the process. They are uncomfortable and unfamiliar with the process and how to negotiate or navigate through issues with lenders, inspectors, etc. A conversation with a professional can help you understand an overall strategy and they can protect your interests.
Look long distance local. When moving to a new area, finding an experience realtor familiar with the area you are moving to is invaluable. A good realtor will get to know you, and what you are looking for, and because they are familiar with the area, they can help you find the neighborhoods, or community that best fits your lifestyle and interests. I have had many situations both with buyers and sellers where the other realtor was not local and was unfamiliar with the areas they were working in.
An agent who listed a lake property was totally unaware of just how crazy that market can be and had to quickly take the listing off the market to make accommodations for the seller. Another agent, representing a buyer, who has never handled the purchase of lake property, had no idea of the problems you can encounter when dealing with the municipality managing the lake. Working with an expert in that specific market area can make all the difference in the transaction and can protect the buyer and the seller in the process.
Make the decision. Because many people are allowed to work remotely now, it has opened up a whole new way of life. Make sure your new town or area can facilitate what you will need to work in from home. Internet is one of the biggest issues people face, deliveries can be another. Most smaller towns and rural areas do not have wired internet capability, so you will need to ensure you have the bandwidth you need. As well, if your business requires shipping or receiving shipments, check to ensure secure delivery. We live rurally and do not receive mail at our home. However, many shipping companies will not deliver to a PO Box, so we had to build a container and make sure it is secure on our farm road, so we can safely receive our deliveries. We still have misses, but it is getting better.
Dreams can be shattered when you move to a new area with expectations that cannot be met, or there is a lack of the knowledge needed that hinders your purpose. You don’t know what you don’t know until you realize you don’t know it.
Make a plan to sell. When you finally make the decision, reach out to your local realtor and make a plan to list your house, and what you will need to do to get your home ready. The realtor can also help you know what kind of timeframe it will take to sell. One of the biggest problems people often face is not knowing the timeframe to sell and/or is pricing their home too high and it sits on the market too long. Make sure you take your realtors advice on price and timeframe so you can get it sold and move into your new life.
Make a plan to buy. Make sure you work closely with the realtor in the place you are moving to. Some markets will work with contracts contingent on the sale of another property. Others are not. In a hot market, with multiple buyers, you may not be able to put a contract in on a property until you either have a contract on the home you are selling, or it has already sold and closed. Don’t be disappointed if you have to find a place to stay or even rent a home in your new location. While it may be a hassle, that will often be the least stressful and easier solution.
Remember, that just because you have made large moves in your life, it doesn’t mean you can just skim by. Someone I was working with recently, was selling their home in South Texas, and moving to my area. They got a contract on the home they were selling and asked me for names of movers. I gave them the names of several that would move over long distances. Because they had some time, they decided not to reach out to get the info. By the time they called, the moving companies were all booked and could not accommodate their timeframe, so they had to recruit family and U-Hauls, to make the move. Proper planning, gathering information, and making contact with key companies, is absolutely necessary to save you a lot of stress and heartache.
Purchasing long distance. When you purchase a home long distance, most of what takes place is through email, wire transfers, video, and text. While it can be hard to look at a home online and make a decision, chances are you will have to travel to look at it before you buy it. Budget time and money for that trip. I have gone to homes that my long-distance buyers are interested in and shot a video tour the property for them, explaining what I see and making note of things they may need to know. However, many buyers are having to buy their home sight-unseen. If a great property comes up, there may not be time to travel and view it. So be prepared.
Inspection time. If a buyer makes an offer and it is accepted, they may need to get an inspection. Many inspectors will do the inspection, then either video conference the buyers or send them photos while they are inspecting the home.
Closing long distance. When it is time to close, a remote closing is possible, but because original signatures are required, it may be a day or so for the documents to be sent overnight, so it takes a little longer to finalize everything. Again, your realtor will coordinate everything. If you are planning to move to another state, the overall process may be similar to your home, but the rules and laws may be different. Your agent in your new location should be able to give you all the information you will need to keep you out of trouble. I provide videos of both the buying and selling process as well as written documentation. This way, they can review it when necessary to know what comes next.
Going to the extreme. If you have lived in the city, in a subdivision, or in a highly populated area your entire life, it is absolutely imperative that you investigate everything fully before deciding to move to the country or going ‘off-grid.’ Many want to escape their close quarters, especially after the situations we all found ourselves in this past year. But dealing with a well and septic, country life, driving a bit longer for necessities, and not having all of the comforts at your fingertips, can be very daunting.
As well, if you have always lived rurally and you are planning to move to the ‘city’ or to a beachfront condo, make sure you have visited enough that you are very familiar with the lifestyle.
One of my husbands favorite new shows is one about people buying property in Alaska. Many are moving from the lower 48 and are hoping for the romantic, rugged lifestyle they have dreamed of. However, it is often comical that some are totally unaware that basic utilities do not come with the property. They have no idea that raw land is literally raw, and all of the conveniences they will need, have to be installed. Educating your self on your new location is the only way to hopefully protect you from things that could really make you miserable.
As you all know, I am a local realtor, working in Wise, Montague, Parker, Clay and Jack Counties. I’ve worked some in Denton and Cooke Counties, and love helping people find their next dream. A retired couple wanting to be near a golf-course, grandparents wanting to be close to the newest grandbaby, adult children wanting mom and dad to be closer to them, and even some escaping the extreme weather of the north, are all situations I have worked with.
If you, or someone you know is contemplating a move, whether short or long distance, let me know. I would love to connect you and them, with their next dream.
Connecting you with My Listings!
Lot 29, Blk 1 Cimmarron Bay Estates
Runaway Bay, TX 76426
MLS # 14633177
Beautiful views of Lake Bridgeport open water, this property offers wooded area and prepared pad-site. Plenty of waterfront to build a large dock and quick boating to all parts of the water. Cimarron Bay Estates provides quick access to ramps and even the updated Runaway Bay Country Club with golfing, restaurant, and views galore. Waterfront acreage is hard to come by, so get it before it's gone. For Runaway Bay restrictions, information and building guidelines, go to www.runawaybaytexas.com.
Highway 380 and take the second exit for Runaway Drive Exit 9, At the roundabout turn right onto Shady Oaks Drive. You will stay right at the Cimmarron Estates sign. Follow around the circle at the end of the road, lot will be on your right.
Go to CStheconnector.com to view all of the listings I have available.
We are in a time where everyone is talking about what is going to happen. Whether it is the real estate market, the economy, the government, the world, the spiritual arena, I could go on, but I would never get to the point.
As a realtor I am constantly faced with the question, or presented with an opinion, of what is coming in the real estate market. Because I am not a genie in a bottle, nor do I have a crystal ball, I can unequivocally say – I don’t know!
Some folks believe I should know, and many folks claim to know what is coming, I guess I’m just not that smart.
Last year when the quarantine hit, I truly believed it was going to tank the market. I had no idea it would just abound and end up as one of the hottest markets ever seen. So that is why I can say resolutely, I do not know.
Here are the things I do know - Glass Half Empty
Other things I do know - Glass Half Full
Administrations change every 4-8 years, and the economy shifts with it, in some way or another. I saw a sign on a property last year that said something like “Land for Sale – depending on who wins election.” That is a permanent decision based on a temporary situation.
My parents bought a home in the 80’s, from a couple that were selling out and moving to a type of religious complex, all because of what the preachers and prognosticators, were saying at the time. Not many years after, the head of that ministry was accused and tried for adultery and embezzling. Now the, once beautiful complex and theme park, has been sold off with huge empty buildings, and a variety of housing. Millions and millions were lost to investors and families. The family that sold that home to my parents, made a permanent decision based on temporary situation. They had to start all over.
Buyers have called me, wanting to find land so they can live off-grid and become preppers because they are listening to some saying we are in for a really bad time. It is supposedly coming soon and we will need to be self-sustaining. I heard the same thing about Y2K and we all know how that turned out.
However, many real estate experts say that we will never again see the housing crashes as drastic as we have in the past. There will be an adjustment at some point, but so many things have been put into place to prevent the predators from destroying the market in that way. So there is hope for the future.
If you are thinking about selling out to become a prepper, selling so you can get the equity and pay cash, or you need a larger home because of your family situation, let’s talk. I can help you weed through all of the variables and try to help you make the best decision possible. This is no time for a rash decision, and I would love to be your trusted real estate advisor, to help your situation. Sometimes just talking it out, helps alleviate the concerns and you may just decide to stay where you are. I truly want you to come to the best decision for you and your family.
If you are interested in what some of the real experts say about the market, go to Home - Real Estate Center (tamu.edu). Texas A&M Real Estate Center has Housing, Employment, and Index reports as well as other industry information.
Update from the Wedding!
I wanted to just let you know the wedding was absolutely beautiful and they are happily settling in to their new life together. Thank you for your sweet comments and congratulations. We had a wonderful weekend.
Connecting you with Happenings and Places!
I am a proud member of the Wise County Chamber of Commerce. They provide support for businesses in and around Wise County. There are Chamber offices in Bridgeport, Decatur and Chico, but many of the smaller communities do not have a city office, so that is the strength that WC Chamber brings.
Recently they created a calendar of area events, that highlights what was going on in Wise County. Below are just a few coming up! But click on the links below to go to their website and like their FB page, so you can see all of the great happenings and information.
(20+) Wise County Chamber of Commerce | Facebook
Wise County Chamber of Commerce – Welcoming, Uniting and Promoting Business
God is the only one who can make the valley of trouble a door of hope.