Who ARE you?

Property tax challenges.  That's one of the things I do for clients and it's started right on time this year as we Califonians have had their assessed values mailed to us a week ago. 

I've had a couple of people call me regarding their tax assessments on their property in the last week.  One is a friend who has a very unique property and deserves all the help he can get.  Not easy to do, but I tried and advised him to challenge the assessor, using what I gave him.

Then I had the worst nightmare come along.  Ms. TC (Tax Challenger) called me.  She said, in her heavy French accent, she saw me the other day.  She reminded me of who she was at that time.  I couldn't recall that conversation.

I know that when I see somebody, even a neighbor, I haven't seen for awhile, I try to beat them to the punch by saying my name.  Even when I'm riding my bike, I holler out their name, and then my own!  I figure it would be tough to place a bike rider, riding by, into a memory about... anything! 

My trademark is my ratty (not natty) orange and yellow vest.  That puts a real estate broker into a different class.  At least three non-local agents have decided I have come to their Broker's Open Houses, as a crossing guard taking a break and I am just looking around.  One wondered why I was working on that day.  It must have been a holiday.  I had to think quickly.  Oh! I'm not a crossing guard.  I've been a real estate broker for nearly 25 years and am touring the properties by bike.  I quickly drop a card...but my picture on the card doesn't match my appearance.  It does not show a bike helmet on my head or the ratty vest.  They are unconvinced until I see other agents who acknowledge me.

I digress.  Ms. TC continued to tell me who she was.  She had told me about her adult son and daughter who bought the place for her.  I asked about her condo, the address, her email.  I told her I would help her but she was so forceful she kind of put me into submission about the "amnesia" event.  I told her I didn't know her.  She was not to be argued with.  So I sent her what she wanted.  Done.

I keep pretty good records of my clients.  I looked up the county record. it didn't sell when she said it did. I searched the multiple listing service based on the time the record said she closed.  Not in the MLS.  I looked her up in my the database.  Nada. I looked her up in my track record of properties sold, by year, that I give to folks I am interviewing.  Nothing.  This woman was a phantom.

Ut-oh.  I needed to get clear on this.  Could I have forgotten her?  Even the recent conversation?  Was I looney?  Was I in a time-warp?  AAGH!

 I took my stand for myself and I put Ms. TC out the door, so to speak, and went on.  I regained my peace.

She got my email and responded.  It was just what she needed.  And by the way, she looked up my photo and I wasn't the Marilyn Schumaker (note the wrong spelling she had), that sold her the condo.  So sorry, she said.  But she got what she wanted. 

I had already claimed my peace.  Lesson learned.   It didn't matter what she said happened.  It never happened!

Live richly, and may your peace be with you.



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