Realtor Profile

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WHO: Sue Elbertson, Realtor and Accredited Staging Professional

WHERE: Office at Prudential Carruthers in Old Town, home in Mount Vernon

WHEN: She became a Realtor last December and says, This is my last profession. She has also been an artist and a government contractor for software development after working as a legal secretary. In deciding to become a Realtor, she was influenced by her mother, Corrine Gay, who had owned a Century 21 franchise in Maryland. I needed to be in a job where I could be in contact with people, she says. I love interacting with them. I am not a person who can sit behind a desk.

Having lived in Maryland for many years, Sue attended the University of Maryland before moving to Virginia 11 years ago.

Her youthful appearance and bubbly personality belie the fact that she has three children and six grandchildren.

WHY: Real Estate is a challenge for me, and I enjoy that, she says. I also have a natural ability to mesh well with people, and I love being able to help them. It just really feels natural to me.

WHAT: As so often happens, she found that her previous experience was useful in her present career. I have a natural ability for color and balance from being an artist, she says. She now offers her staging expertise to her clients as a free service.

The most basic rule is, Remember that the way you live in your house and the way you prepare it for sale are completely different. The purchasers want to imagine themselves in that home. Things like your family pictures and even Grandmas quilt should be put away.

And whether you want to impress prospective buyers or enjoy your own surroundings, she says the first step is to keep those kitchen counters clear.

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