Growing up in South Carolina, my parents would always drag me and my sisters to look at model homes and resale homes. My sisters and I would entertain ourselves by making up games and hiding in all the empty spaces.
It wasn’t that we were constantly moving. My parents just loved looking at the homes. And soon I did, too. I started to imagine what it would be like to live in this house or who would live in that house. What would their lives look like?
As I got older, I began traveling more and I noticed how much the homes changed from place to place. The formal spaces we grew up with in our home (which were only used on truly special occasions, like Thanksgiving or Christmas) didn’t exist in most of the homes I visited in foreign countries. Unless you count include Versaille, but in Versaille every room is formal.
At our family’s home in Egypt, where we spent summers, we had a formal living room and dining room, and our culture dictated that we welcome guests with the utmost hospitality. But we didn’t have a playroom and we just ate in the kitchen.
As I traveled, I’d create stories for the people I encountered — where they lived, how they lived, what they did. I still do this today when watching “House Hunters International” and working at NDG. So, it isn’t a big surprise that I really get inspired by people and their stories.
I love touring our clients’ homes and communities and then imagining the lives of the people who will live in there. How would they use this space? Who would this house work for? Who would want to live in this community? Working with our clients at NDG allows me to constantly engage this fascination of mine.
I really enjoy testing my stories against the market research and the actual traffic, and I enjoy shifting these stories to account for things I may not have imagined. Envisioning who will live in the homes and communities helps me pull together a marketing strategy and find the messaging that fits our prospects’ life story and their aspirations.
In a Letter from the Editor in the current issue of Architectural Digest, Margaret Russell signs off with a statement about Cuba and how “spirits are bright with hope for a better life. That’s a goal we can all aspire to, no matter where we live.”
I believe this is true in any of our clients’ communities and homes. Everyone wants a better life. If I can imagine what their better life looks like, I can help our clients make it a reality.