People seek luck and fortune through any number of symbols - rabbit's feet, horseshoes, four leaf clovers, shooting stars, shiny pennies, or wishbones.
But you won't find any of these symbols buried upside down in your yard. What you might find, however, is St. Joseph, the Patron Saint of real estate.
Zillow recently covered the topic in this article, Can't Sell Your Home? Bury a Saint. In speaking with some folks we found many were surprised to learn that this not only true, but widely practiced in real estate circles around the country and the world.
It goes something like this: Secure the client, list the home, run the ads, show to buyers, bury the saint upside down, either facing the house or the street (there are variations as to the burying and placement). This is not just for the religious - you don't need to be Catholic to call upon the heavenly top producer - you just need a bit of dirt and an open mind.
While Snopes (the Internet reference source for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation) has the practice in the 'urban legend' category, St. Joseph sales have been cited as something of an economic indicator by others:
"'In the past, we've seen some upticks in sales of the [St. Joseph] kits whenever there's a sign that the housing market is on the skids,' said Nicholas Cole, director of marketing for a Charlotte, NC company that sells religious items online. Cole was quoted by The New York Times in 2009 -- during a particularly low point of the real estate market."
So if you've sold your home or are in the process and have noticed a patch of grass or garden that looks a little askew, it might not be the chipmunk or squirrel you assume it to be.
And if you're wondering if Steve McKenna and the Home Advantage Team sneak out in the middle of the night with Saint and shovel in hand, well, you know we'll never tell. But we will say that our own hard work and reputation are what we rely on to sell homes and to be the best real estate team in Arlington Mass.