One of the fun things about helping people find a new home is to check in on them later and see what they think of their neighborhood.
I get the pleasure of helping them find the home that they love but the rest they discover on their own. For example, their new neighbor makes the best cinnamon rolls ever and is always willing to share, the girl down the street loves kids and becomes their favorite babysitter, or there is a neighbor who walks by every day and always has a friendly smile that just brightens their day. These are the things that I hope people experience when they move into the home that I helped them find.
I think that we should call these people “house bonuses.” They aren’t listed on the MLS as selling features but they sure make the house that you bought and your neighborhood extra special. You know what every one of these has in common? They all deal with people and not things. I didn’t say their neighborhood had a great community pool. I said that they interact with someone who is helpful or kind. Support people. And that is something that makes a community great!
On the Friday night after the Smithville/Dalton football game, Andy and I were sitting around the fire with two of our cousins. Just four cousins sitting around chatting about football and life and eating too many S’mores (OK, that was me eating too many S’mores. They had zero and I had enough for all four of us!)
We started talking about the pillars of our community, not by position held (like mayor, teacher, police officer) but by support they have shown. And of course, very quickly, Dick Blake’s name came up. Dick Blake who didn’t grow up in Dalton but has adopted this community as if his family resided here for generations. Dick Blake who has no children or grandchildren (at least to my knowledge) in the district but attends everything. And I mean EVERYTHING! Sporting events, plays, choir, band concerts – he is at them all – because he supports his community. He is one of those “house bonuses.”
Anyway, back to the four cousins. We were talking about how we are thankful that we as the parents are able to see our boys play football but how difficult it is to obtain tickets to the football game for others who have been faithful attendees forever. That is when the “community pillars” were mentioned. Mr. Blake got to go to the game on Friday because a parent saw how disappointed Mr. Blake was because he couldn’t support the team as usual and that parent gave him one of his two parent tickets to let him go. And the parent said that the look on Mr. Blake’s face and how excited he was made this parent absolutely happy and grateful that he was able to do something special for the man who shows up for the Bulldog kids: Every. Single. Event.
You may be living in your dream house but the people around it – those outside of your family you are living with – are the added bonus. If you live in your dream house but every neighbor ignores you when they walk by and never waves, the home just doesn’t quite have the same appeal. Relationships and the community make a home just as special as what is inside the four walls that you are living in.
We all want a Mr. Blake in our community. Someone who shows up and supports whatever is going on. Someone who says “hi” when he walks by. Someone who teaches us what it means to be neighborly.
So here is my request. Parents, if you are in a position where you have access to an extra ticket for ANY activity your kids are participating in this year or you know of someone who does, please keep Mr. Blake in mind. If a community is lucky enough to have a Mr. Blake they should treasure that person.
Community support draws people in. People move into communities that they know are supported by those who reside there. And an area with a reputation for community support is one where more people want to buy, which increases property values, and an increase in property values is a good thing.
Esta Ryder, Broker/Owner
Ryder Realty, LLC