Unlike recent trips, this road trip wasn't all fun. The first few days were spent with family in RI to celebrate granddaughter Ellie's 6th birthday with all 3 grandchildren.
Family then gathered for beach time in CT where youngest granddaughter, 7-month old, Lilliana had her first toes in the sand experience. She wasn't as fond of the chilly water temps as her older cousins and preferred to stay on the beach with her mom and aunt.
Once in VA, yard work projects such as weeding and pruning filled the morning hours. From years of living there in hot and humid summer months, we learned to work early in the day. Afternoons were spent reading on the front porch.
Getting online wasn't an option unless we went to a local McDonald's or public library. There's no internet access at the house, even cell service was sporadic. Did I mention that the house is in a small town? (Grenville said to add that the mail delivery pony came up lame.) It's not exactly a rural area rural, but technologically not as advanced as a larger town.
Yard work aside, our most important task was to sign with a new realtor. This time, we went with a national realty firm vs. the independent realtor we stayed with far too long. While parting with the former didn't go smoothly; that's in the past now.
Before our VA arrival, we emailed two realtors to set up meetings. The difference in their presentations was eye opening. The first came prepared with analysis of tax records, area sales, previous realty listings. He'd visited the property, checked the house and grounds before our arrival, and was dressed well. The second realtor arrived with no paperwork, holding a cell phone, hadn't checked the house or yard, and was dressed very informally in shorts and a t-shirt. (Not a hard choice to decide as you've probably figured out.)
One suggestion from the selected realtor was an "aha" moment for us. Instead of suggesting that we spend $ for interior "updates" (which wouldn't bring a higher sale) he proposed that we trim or remove a cedar tree in the front yard.
There was nothing "special" about the tree, except that we'd transplanted it from our native NJ. It was where we hung holiday lights for a few years. It didn't provide shade in the front yard and actually kept the lawn from growing below it.
Since the chain saw was sold as part of downsizing, he used a pole saw to trim lower branches. After that calling a tree removal service was (another) easy decision.
Neighbors who visited before we left said they never knew there were blue shutters on the front of the house.
Now, we're hoping prospective buyers can "see" the house too. Better yet, we hope that the realtor change will bring a sale (soon).