The doodle gets an $80 haircut. How is that related to buying (or selling) a house in Kitchener Waterloo?

golden doodleThe thing they don’t tell you about Golden Doodles is that you have to take them to the groomer every three or four months. They tell you “they don’t shed” so logically one can draw a line from this piece of information to the “Dog Spaw” “Bark Avenue” “Ruff Ruff and Ready” or “Snip Doggy Dog Shop” – but I didn’t. After the first year of having Chichi, and trimming her myself with some electric clippers I bought at Walmart and a pair of kitchen scissors, my quest began for a dependable and inexpensive dog groomer.

It’s a much harder task than it would seem.

I eventually found one at Petcetera (on Northfield), who would “shave the doodle” for $40, but then the store closed and I had to find another. I found a cheap but good groomer on Fairway Road but I live in Waterloo and Cheech drools when she gets nervous and she get nervous in the car, so that didn’t work so well.

Then Petcetera reopened as “the new Petcetera” and we were back in business. The groomer there gave Chichi some interesting cuts – the last one she left the last two inches at the end of her tail long but shaved the rest, so poor Cheech looked like she was swatting flies when she was happy, she looked like some warthog/hound crossbreed, like one of those fishes with the light at the end of its tail, they hold over their head to attract small fish…but the groomer was cheap and Chichi is a dog after all. She doesn’t mind.

Yesterday we had an appointment, Chichi’s hair was long and muddy and full of twigs and burrs from running through the brush. I was already in the store when my phone rang. It was the store. The groomer had called in sick. Thanks for the notice.

So, since I had the dog with me I decided to find someone, anyone to give her a cut. I found a place on Albert Street, and they said they could fit her in – so there we went. The doodle got an $80 hair cut and she looks nice. But I was desperate and on a mission; I would not be denied.

Since this is a real estate blog, not a dog groomer blog here’s a parallel to this story and to selling or buying a home.

Buying a home: Many people get started (like I did with the dog and a pair of clippers) as do-it-yourselfers. They look online, go to open houses, talk to people. They spend a lot of time, running around, asking a lot of questions, gleaning information, figuring things out and that’s ok, I’ve always been a strong proponent of education.

The problem isn’t in the looking  – it’s in the finding. Do-it-yourself buyers aren’t really ready when they find their dream home. They dither and lose out to a faster bid, they pay too much, they haven’t prepared to put their house up for sale, they don’t understand the paperwork or how to work with realtors, bankers, insurance agents, inspectors… They simply just aren’t ready, but like I was with the dog yesterday, they are on a mission and they will not be denied.

Do it yourself home sellers too, often aren’t prepared for what lies ahead. We are talking about what is likely your most valuable asset, your home. The real estate market has changed since you bought your last home. Talk to your realtor about his services and his charges and what has changed. You may be surprised. Often home sellers start out just fine but then act emotionally instead of logically. Mistakes happen, losses are incurred. That’s all I’m saying.

Contact me if you want to talk about buying or selling homes in Kitchener, Waterloo or Cambridge, and if you know a good dog groomer that would be a bonus!