KENOSHA, WISCONSIN — “The emotions didn’t actually hit until we got everything out of the house and I had to leave my key behind,” Jackie said, describing what it was like to sell her childhood home. “It was then that I really realized, this is no longer my house or my family’s house and that was hard. But it was also a happy moment. We were ready to move on. And Mini made it so much easier.”
“We were definitely ready to move,” chimed in Scott, Jackie’s husband. “That house was built in 1898 – it was the second oldest home in Bristol.”
“That house had been in my family for almost 50 years,” Jackie added. “And we held on to it for quite a while – mostly for sentimental reasons. My dad passed away 12 years ago. He did a lot of work on that house, so it felt like he was in the home. But, over the past year, I really came to realize that he’s not there. Not anymore. He is in our hearts and our memories. And that house needed so much work. We felt like we were being crushed by it.”
While Jackie and Scott were mentally preparing to sell their house, Mini Samuel of NextHome Refined was looking for help cleaning one of her condos.
“I answered a Facebook post for a house cleaning job, and that person pointed me to Mini,” Jackie explained. “And the rest was history. Ever since, she has just felt like a friend.”
With Mini’s help, Jackie and Scott put their family home on the market and, as luck would have it, the plaster ceiling upstairs began to fall off during the showings.
“We took it off the market for a week or two while we did some repairs,” Scott said. “We replaced the upstairs floors with hardwood while we were at it. The funny thing was, the couple who bought the house were waiting patiently for it to come back on the market. It was great that we were able to sell that home to someone who really wanted it.”
“The buyers were amazing – even with all the hiccups we experienced right before closing,” Jackie said. “Oh this appraiser was really dragging his feet! He held the appraisal for a whole week. We were scheduled to close on Wednesday and the appraisal didn’t come back until Friday. And of course, there were some major things that he flagged that then had to be fixed.”
One of those now-mandatory repairs was the entire garage roof.
Mini got to work with one of her many contacts. She got roofers to prepare an estimate Saturday, they worked on it all Monday, finished Tuesday night and the sale closed on Wednesday.
“I don’t know if this woman ever sleeps because she was always checking in on us,” Jackie said. “She went way above and beyond. Selling this house was a big step for us. I had a lot of ups and downs. There were times when I would question – is this right? And Mini always had the right thing to say. I never felt like she was out to make a sale – she was always just a friend.”
That care and concern continued as Mini found Scott and Jackie a new home.
“Kenosha wasn’t really on the radar for us,” Scott said. “But when we drove up we thought ‘wow this is nice.’ The neighborhood is nice. It was just perfect.”
It was actually a home that Mini had owned many years ago. The owner had let Mini know that he wanted to sell and Mini immediately thought of Jackie and Scott.
“I walk in now and think ‘everything is just so bright!’” Jackie said. “Everything here brings me a sense of brightness and joy. You walk in and the main level is the living room and kitchen. You go up a level and there are three bedrooms and a bathroom. Then downstairs there is a big open space with a fireplace, another full bath and then a few more stairs you get to the basement with storage and a laundry area. When I look at this home, and think of all the memories we will make here, I imagine grandkids running around in that basement. I think of spending time out in the fenced backyard. The neighbors here are all very friendly. Then, there is a park down the road with nature trails and a pond. Last night Scott and I went for a long walk. It was a great place to escape to.”
Even as they make new memories, a reminder of Jackie’s childhood home, and Mini’s kindness, still hangs on Scott and Jackie’s wall.
“Shortly after we moved into our new home, Mini sent us a calendar she had made with pictures from my family home,” Jackie said. “She sent it anonymously but I thought it was her. I texted her to ask if she sent it and she replied, ‘ha, ha it was me. I just wanted you to have pictures of your family home.’ It made me cry and it is a gift I will treasure forever!”
“We can’t say enough about Mini,” Scott added. “I mean, we are going to miss her. This journey had many ups and downs and a lot of emotions and Mini guided us through it all with such grace and compassion. She quickly became more than our realtor, she is our friend.”