BY MARY LYNN BRUNY, KL REALTY
When you think of people buying residential real estate, you think of sweetly happy circumstances: a nervous first-time buyer purchasing a condo; a young, in-love couple choosing a starter home; an attractive, gray-haired retired couple buying a patio home. But as Karen Libin, our principal, pointed out to me during one of our weekly team meetings, we also get business due to other people’s misery. This misery often comes in the form of the two ‘big Ds’: death and divorce — of which death is of course the worse though divorce may be more painful given the anecdotes one hears.
During this meeting, Karen noted that one of our current clients summed up his divorce experience with this quote from the late writer Lewis Grizzard: “Instead of getting married again, I’m going to find a woman I don’t like and give her a house.” To this, I jokingly replied that my husband has probably kept my ornery self around for as long as he has because he really likes our house and, as the saying goes: “It’s cheaper to keep her.” Somehow this phrase hit a collective funny bone and has morphed into ‘It’s cheapa to keepa.’
And keep her (or keep him), many miserable folks do for years upon years for various reasons, financial and otherwise. But not so much here. According to the many news articles published each year, we live in a happy part of one of the happiest states. We’re not the types to just ‘suffer through’ life. It may be ‘cheapa to keepa’ and easier to give in to the inertia of life as is, but not at the ultimate cost of lost years and missed contentment, not as the cost of your house not really being a home in the true sense. “Yah, it’s a major hassle and financial hit to get divorced, but I’m going to be happy no matter what, damn it!”
So real estate firms like ours are part of getting to this new-found happiness. And spring especially seems to be a time when we see business as a result of divorces. This makes perfect sense: Spring is a time of new beginnings, of hope, of renewal, of reinvention, of newfound energy to tackle large tasks. So maybe we need a new category of a happy home buyer: the divorcee with a bottle of champagne toasting with friends. Sounds most wonderful to me. Cheers and happy spring!