How Homes are Like Hamburgers

burgerMy friend ‘discovered’ this wonderful burger joint in Pittsburgh where there were (no lie) at least 100 ways to craft and personalize your burger. As she explained some of the many options (meat type, doneness, seasonings, cheese, bun and toppings) I thought to myself how funny that this is just like real estate. Stay with me… Just like burgers, different options will appeal to different tastes, certain burgers aren’t available everywhere and the price range varies with each option.

Taste.

My friend was explaining the options she chose for her burger…. and I was with her… until she said, “Then I added buffalo sauce.” In my head I was thinking she just ruined the whole thing, but isn’t that what home shoppers think?  What appeals to one buyer is a complete turn off for another. In Western Maryland, the subject of swimming pools comes up frequently. We’ve had buyers that would not even remotely consider looking at a home without a pool. And we’ve had the exact opposite (myself for example). I’ve seen buyers compromise basic needs in a home for a swimming pool, wood floors, granite countertops and an array of other options. It goes to show you just how important taste is and how much it varies from person to person.

Availability.

I wish I could try it out for myself but I’m not driving 2 hours to Pittsburgh to try a burger, even though my friend says it’s worth it. I will resolve to my favorite Savage Burger at the Princess Restaurant (it’s delightful, trust me). But even then, if I have a Savage Burger craving at 9pm on a Saturday night, I’m out of luck because the princess is closed until Monday morning.  You can’t always get what you want: ditto with real estate. Looking for a 40K condo in Frostburg? Good luck. Want a $900K palatial estate in Keyser? Probably not going to happen. In real estate, you’ve got to know when and where to go to get what you’re searching for. Just like hamburgers.

Price.

Think about it, you have everything from a reliable $1 McDouble to $5k gourmet burgers that come with truffles and wine. Why such a big price range: OPTIONS.  My friend added fries and ground bacon (among other toppings) to her custom burger creation, taking the $9 basic burger to a $13 distinctive dinner.  The options you choose in your home will also vastly affect the price. A 4 bedroom, 2 bath contemporary log home at deep creek will cost you a pretty penny, but when you add solar panels, heated driveways, custom kitchens, media rooms and a host of other upgrades your budget has to grow exponentially.

See! Homes ARE like hamburgers.

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