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December 28, 2007

"St. Joseph Statue Buyback Program" launched for thousands of expired real estate listings

No this isn't a parody from The Onion, it's the real thing -- maybe even God's work.  Nearly a decade ago, the practice of burying St. Joseph statues upside down to sell real estate caused me to write "Beyond Superstition: Doing Justice to the "Just Man". When an article on the misguided practice became the most forwarded story in the Wall Street Journal eight weeks ago, I decided to turn my "holy anger" into fund raising idea:

PROBLEM: More than 16,000 MLS listings have expired or been canceled across Massachusetts over the past eight weeks, representing billions of dollars in potential sales.  (UPDATE:  Expired & canceled MLS listings totaled nearly 29,000 during the 4th quarter of 2007, see graph.)

OPPORTUNITY: If you're one of those discouraged sellers, particularly one who buried a St. Joseph statue, consider the following Special Offers:

1. Statue buyback / trade-in:  cost refunded to anyone who becomes a fee-for-service or referral client of The Real Estate Cafe,

2. FREE "for sale by owner" seminar,

3. 20% off the cost of preparing a "listing agent report card" (if you want to select a new agent),

4. 1/3rd of the referral fee paid to The Real Estate Cafe rebated to the seller.

To honor St. Joseph, we ask participating sellers to decide how another third of our referral fee will be donated to charities and causes of their choice.  Think "Pay-it-forward" meets real estate rebates.  Our sample client letter and Referral Rebate Redistribution Worksheet shows you how our "community commission" works.

St. Joseph never said anything (at least nothing recorded in the Bible), but if he weren't buried upside down, here's what we think he'd say about today's real estate market: 

Practical wisdom from St. Joseph:  A generation ago, President John F. Kennedy said, "...here on earth, God's work must truly be our own."  So pull that statue out of the ground, resist the urge to bury your OLD real estate agent upside down, and decide whether you want to sell on your own or need a NEW agent to relist your property in 2008.  Either way, become one of the enlightened sellers who will save billions of dollars in 2008 and do God's work by sharing a fraction of those savings with a charity or cause of your choice.

Bill Wendel | 11:29 AM in Savings & Rebates | Permalink

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That is absolutely genius.

Posted by: Mike | Dec 28, 2007 6:51:47 PM

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