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Selling a home built on memories

This is why I love real estate.

We met Maxine more than three years ago after she called from a flyer solicitation mailed to the Township in which she lived. We spent those three years working hand in hand with her, sorting through a lifetime of more than 90 years. Over 65 of those years in the same home she now wanted to sell.

The accumulation of memories connected with every corner of the home was vast, to say the least! Pricing, marketing and selling the property was no problem. It was easy, because we eat sleep and breathe real estate. Selling a box of memories full of love, loss, childhood, first steps, music lessons, and an endless swirl of milestones – this is a more delicate task.

For the physical process of cleaning out the house, we hired a long time trusted clean out/auctioneer who assisted in sorting through all of the furniture, artwork, books, photographs and documents.

With limited mobility and traveling from Center City Philadelphia to her former Suburban neighborhood once or twice a week, Maxine would meet me at the house and sort through belongings.

Things that were to be kept for the family were placed in one section; items of value were then placed in two different categories (sell or donate); and items of no value were discarded.

The monetary value raised was hundreds of thousands of dollars; a total of 60,000 pounds of items cleaned out, 42,000 pounds of which were refuse; and personal effects resulted in a small storage unit to protect for future generations.

Every photograph, art piece, knick knack, document – everything – had a history and an emotional value.

The education I received on all matters ranging from art to music to local history – and life lessons such as marriage and raising children – were priceless.

Yes, we sold another amazing property in a perfect location. But the real value was in helping to relive and box up those decades of memories; and what we learned along the way.

This is why I love real estate.

Edward A. Welch

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