by Catherine Diane Parker
As a realtor with Carrington Real Estate Services, I often have occasion to show bank owned properties to investors. Whenever I enter a vacant home, the rooms speak to me. No, I do not hear literal voices, but the walls still reverberate with echoes of the people who once lived there. Each room discloses elements of the human touch, some gentle and amusing, and others revealing the anguish of loss.
The bedrooms especially seem to tell the story of individuality. Recently, in one particular house, I noticed that the walls had become a canvas of artistic expression. I observed with amazement as sports figures played across the room, caricatures shooting hoops. Another bedroom, painted in pale blue with puffy, white clouds conveyed the joy of bringing home a newborn baby. Downstairs in the kitchen, which is often the hub of a home, the names of three children had been written on a wall with their measured heights over time. Wistful!
Then, in some homes, the artwork on the walls tells a different story. The dirty, empty rooms cry of neglect, with smudged rugs, scratched woodwork, cracked tiles, and most disturbing of all, holes in many walls. They look more like cavities, areas of rottenness, perhaps created by a sledge hammer. As a realtor, I cannot condone the deliberate destruction of property; however, as a human being, this reality shocks and jolts me, forcing me to recognize the pain of displacement and loss.
I have seen many such bank owned properties, most of which need extensive remodeling before they can be offered for resale or as rentals. For this reason, investors certainly have an important role in real estate. A renovated property is cleaner, safer, and helps a community at large to maintain its value. Yet, I will always think about the people who, for whatever reason (perhaps the loss of employment or a prolonged illness with astronomical medical bills), lost their little piece of the earth.
Real estate is not just about selling, buying, and investing. It is about human beings with real lives, hopes, and dreams. I want to be ever mindful of that, respectful and compassionate.
The Parker Team, consisting of myself and my husband, James, is honored to be a part of Carrington Real Estate Services. Prior to becoming realtors, we worked in the housing industry as contractors and remodelers for over a dozen years. That experience, we feel, uniquely prepared us to assist both sellers and buyers. We are dedicated to helping those real people purchase their homes, and do everything possible to keep them in those homes!
Carrington Real Estate Services, LLC
Office Address: 10 Liberty Street, Suite 218, Danvers, MA 01923
Brokerage License Number: 8690