Saturday, April 27, 2013

Puppy Power

Meet Violet Wiggins.  She joined our family almost three weeks ago.  It's been remarked that upstate dogs live better than most city residents, and that may well be true. But Mrs. Wiggins had a rough start and deserves a little coddling.  She was picked up, scared and lost, on a back road in Arkansas.

The vet, after examining her, suspects that she got dumped as soon as she had her first heat. The shelter here in NY guesstimated her age at two, but the vet says nope - that's a yearling. She's just a puppy.

She's a very, very well behaved puppy and far calmer than I have any right to expect from such a young dog.  So I bring her with me to the office.

I'm not alone in this - our broker has a very spoiled, adorable Maltese who comes along with her when she is in the office. Another salesperson has a Lab/Boxer cross with the most soulful face ever and a wagging tail that can knock down a chair. Violet is a bit unsure, as she is with most new things, and spends most of her time sleeping under my desk on my feet. But she does come out and greet new people, sitting at their feet and waiting to be petted.

Clients, so far, seem to love a dog in the office.  And all the dogs enjoy visitors.  Many clients walk in with their own dogs in tow.  There sometimes seem to be as many dogs on the streets of Woodstock as there are people.  So Violet's landed in a pretty good place.

But not everyone approves.  Some colleagues who don't have dogs aren't pleased by our dog-friendly office policy.  They're not scheduled to be in the office (I would leave Violet home out of respect for their working hours if they were) but they stop in and their disapproval is clear.

So I'm wondering - what do most people think about well-behaved dogs in the workplace?

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Real Estate Agents Are Happier In Their Work Than You

  A friend and client sent me a link to an  article that listed the five happiest and least happy jobs rated by worker satisfaction polls.

Associate attorney topped the misery poll...and real estate sales people ranked the happiest in their work.

She said that meant we were both on the right track - I, having given up a lucrative government communications job to sell real estate, while she makes plans to leave a career in law to become a shop owner.

Strangely, I think this poll is right. And it's strange because today I had what any sane person would consider a stupid, wasted day.

I woke up early as someone wanted to show a listing of mine at ten ayem, then another agent wanted to show it forty five minutes later.  But the seller hadn't gotten back to me about that first appointment, so it still wasn't confirmed.

At eight, the buyer's agent called to see what was going on.  By eight thirty I'd reached the seller, who needed more time to get ready and asked that we turn down that first appointment.


The second showing arrived half an hour late. I sat in the seller's home waiting, playing Fruit Ninja (thank you, Cullen - without you it would have been Angry Birds).

Half an hour later they were gone and I had a couple of hours to kill until the day's big event - a "major music personality" was arriving at 2 PM to look at my amazing $2.5M listing and both the owner and I would be there to help explain why (and how) this luxury home is off-grid.

Who was this celebrity? I can't tell you. The other agent wouldn't say.

By 3 PM, the owner and I were dying to know who it was so we knew who to scold.  The agent said she wrote, she phoned, she texted. She got no response. And she had to apologize to three agents and three sellers for a client who never showed up.

That doesn't sound like fun at all, does it?

But in fact, my seller and I had a fine time, chatted about the state of the world, the sorry reality of our chemically-laced food supply, his dreams to travel again versus his desire to be a happy hermit. I got to spend an hour or more in one of the loveliest spots I know.

The owner was understanding about the no-show and said he is never surprised by such things.

So instead of a miserable hour, we talked, promised to see each other again in a couple of days when CBS comes to do a video feature on his home for Earth Day, and I came home to put in a couple of hours doing some spring yardwork.

I worked much of the day and I made no money. I suppose that's most people's definition of a bad day. But there will be a payday down the road and not too far - and I'm truly enjoying the work I'm doing.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Joining The Upstater

If you like what you read here, check out another place where I'll be posting.  As of April 3, I'll be penning (typing?) Upstate 101 on a great blog for people who love the upstate New York

I'm sharing some home buying tips and some insider information on some of my favorite places and people.  I'm hoping it'll be a place where we can share some information - maybe you'll clue me in to some places I didn't know about!

I spent a few hours in Rosendale last weekend - the day before Easter to be exact. It was a bit surreal.  The sidewalks were empty except for a huge Easter bunny looking for people to give candy to.  Yet the shops were hopping - which made me wonder: how was everyone getting from shop to shop?  Do they have teleporters in Rosendale?