I have had to laugh at the amount of real estate chatter about the difference between homes and houses. I heard it a the NAR conference last week and again in the latest copy of the REALTOR magazine. Suddenly we have to remind real estate professionals that people buy homes not houses. Seems a bit silly and sad to me that we in the industry have lost sight of the fact that we don’t help people buy and sell houses, we help people buy and sell homes.
I don’t remember my mom ever mentioning that we were living in an investment. She never mentioned appreciation, price points, return on investment or retirement funding. Instead she called the place we lived our home. It was the place we came to at the end of school or work. It was the place where she made the best barbecued chicken. It was the place I did my homework and worked through the angst of being a teenager. It was the place I came back too when I needed to recover from surgery. It was the place she died.
Our house was a lot of things but most of all it was our home.
Perhaps this all sounds a little hookie but I get a little crazy when I hear people talking about price per square foot or net sheets for sellers or even that we should now refer to the people we help as consumers rather than clients.
I know that for most of us the purchase of a house is the most expensive thing we will ever buy. I know that houses are for the most part a commodity, something that we can find another of if the current one doesn’t meet our needs. But I also know that these buildings called houses are the places we create memories for a lifetime. They are the places we raise our kids and where we entertain our grandchildren. They are the places we share with our friends and family. In short they are the places we call home.
I never help people buy or sell houses. I never call the people I help consumers. The buildings I help people buy and sell are always homes and the people I serve are always clients, even friends.
I am working with some new buyers now who explained to me that the home they want needs a certain number of bedrooms, needs to be a certain size, needs to be in a certain area, but most of all the home needs to be a place were their kids play with other kids in the neighborhood without “play dates.” That sure sounds like a home to me.