Tribune Print Share Text

5 days to a sale

Proof that professional realty assistance really works

Created date

August 12th, 2010

Marilyn and Richard Craine had planned to put their 100-year-old Nutley, N.J., colonial on the market in April, when flowers are blooming, grass is green, and buyers are ready to bite. But when they found the perfect apartment home at Cedar Crest, an Erickson Living community in Pompton Plains, in February just before the third blizzard of the season we just couldn t turn it down, Mrs. Craine says. Strong-willed and hopeful, they called Cedar Crest s Personal Moving Consultant Margaret Semezko, who helped them downsize and stage their house and put it on the market using a Prudential real estate agent she recommended. Despite the blizzard, their house had two offers within five days. I was expecting three to five months, but it sold so quickly, Mrs. Craine says. The house showed very nicely, partly because of Margaret s help.

Professional benefits

I started working with Marilyn when she was on the priority list, Semezko says of the waiting list people join to reserve their place in line for an apartment home atCedar Crest. I gave her some staging suggestions that she followed through on, and that really helped sell their home. For example, Mrs. Craine says, Semezko suggested the Craines move a large couch in their living room that detracted from the fireplace and stained glass window. She also moved some furniture from their dining room to other rooms of the house to simplify the look and showcase key areas.

Downsizing, staging, and moving assistance

After living in a house for 43 years, it was hard to get rid of things, but Margaret gave us good guidance, Mrs. Craine says. She made suggestions on how to get rid of certain items and what to keep. The Craines used Craigslist to sell furniture not being taken by family members. They sold other items at neighborhood garage and yard sales, and they kept some pieces to help stage the house. Downsizing and staging the home helped open the house to people who visited in person and online. The real estate agent took beautiful pictures to show our house on the Internet, Mrs. Craine says. Once their house sold, the Craines hired a moving company (also recommended by Semezko) and moved into theirCedar Crestapartment home on May 12. It worked out perfectly, Mrs. Craine says. And for using professionals recommended by Semezko those who are onCedar Crest spreferred vendors list the Craines qualified for a reimbursement of up to $3,000 of their moving costs.

Getting established

Mr. and Mrs. Craine are still getting settled, but it hasn t taken them long to feel at home. I love it, Mrs. Craine says. We re still getting established, but what a difference in the whole atmosphere atCedar Crestversus any other retirement community we visited. Mrs. Craine says they have already tried the cardio exercise program in the community s fitness center, bingo ( which we won, she adds), and the newcomer orientation. There are so many fantastic things here, she says. One of the nice things aboutCedar Crestis that every time you dine, you meet new people. You can t be lonely here.