Ozaukee & Washington County Real Estate: Lessons Learned from the World of Short Sales

Find out more about Ozaukee and Washington County real estate, including the cities of Grafton, Belgium, Cedarburg, West Bend, Jackson and Germantown.

Lessons Learned from the World of Short Sales

short sale


A few days ago I came across a blog post by ActiveRain member, Norm Werner, entitled I Never Thought It Would Happen to Me. It's been awhile since I've worked on a short sale transaction (and I'm very grateful for that), but I am well aware that there are still many people out there who are in trouble.

His post took me back to some face-to-face and phone conversations I have had with sellers over the past few years that left me wondering what on earth is happening out there?

I remember my grandma telling me about growing up during the Great Depression when I was "interviewing" her for a school project many, many years ago, and I remember this sort of sadness and pain in her eyes that still today I can't quite shake. I thought that kind of hardship was something that only happened "in the olden days."

I know there are many arguments about who's to blame for the real estate mess we've been through and continue to find our way out of. But as someone who, while I didn't face a short sale or foreclosure, felt the pangs of a down market and the effects it had on my annual income, I learned quickly that perhaps the most important thing for me to remember when I meet someone who is in dire need of getting out of a mortgage mess is to not pass judgment.

Yes, there are those who made some really bad choices that introduced them to the world of short sales.

But there are also those who simply fell upon some tough, tough times. Job loss. Divorce. Demotion and significant income reduction. Illness. Loss of health insurance. Death.

When you meet those who fall into the latter category, you never forget their stories, their embarrassment, their shame, their loss of pride, their sadness. They did nothing wrong. The feeling of failure cuts so deep that asking for help becomes heart-wrenchingly difficult. You cannot know that heaviness until or unless you go through it yourself.

I read many blog posts each day by agents from around the country, and there is a relief in knowing that some of our market areas seem to have the worst behind us. It is a feeling of gratitude.

I hope we never again face times like we did these past few years; and I hope I never forget the lessons I learned from going through it.


Originally posted at http://peggywester.com/lessons-learned-world-short-sales-foreclosures/


Peggy Wester
Phone: 262-370-1757
Email: pwester@realtyexecutives.com
Website: peggywester.com
Blog: peggysblog.com

Peggy Wester - Realty Executives Integrity

Comment balloon 3 commentsPeggy Wester • March 22 2013 05:16PM


I was once told, "When you lose, don't lose the lesson." I believe it too. :)


Love and light,


Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) about 6 years ago



Great post!

Yes we are not to pass judgement on peoples hardships as we are Realtors and that means we are professionals and that is why they come to us in the first place, which is to help them which also in returns helps us, title companies, banks, inspectors, etc.. I look at it as it is just part of our job. We sometimes have to hear some bad hardship stories but we need to assure them that they are not alone and there is nothing to be ashamed of. Tell them of the many famous people and or inventors that lost their investments many times before hitting it big. I try to make the sellers feel happy and un-ashamed when they leave because they will again someday need another home and or they have friends and or family that will need to buy or sell.

Neil Pluister-REMAX First-Minocqua-Northern Wisconsin Real Estate


Posted by Neil Pluister, Realtor Up North (RE/MAX Property Pros Minocqua Neil Pluister (715) 367-7270) about 6 years ago

Neil -- I, too, try to reassure the sellers they are not alone. I think it helps a bit, but the hurt is still there. The best I can do is show compassion to them. Have been thru some tough times myself and am still digging out, so unfortunately, I can relate a bit. :)

Posted by Peggy Wester, Real Estate Agent Ozaukee & Washington County (Realty Executives Integrity) about 6 years ago