Inman published a profile of LandVest’s Ruth Kennedy Sudduth earlier this week, and already it seems like a charming throwback to a time before the world changed. The article is behind a paywall, so we have republished an abridged version here. Many thanks to our friends at Inman, the real estate industry authority.
6:30 am: I live on an old farm, so the day begins with throwing hay to the horses. The farm got me into real estate – I was a money manager and a LandVest client. LandVest helped me buy and conserve the land around my farm to protect it from being developed. I thought the real estate business so ripe for a level of sophisticated advice that is standard stuff in the investment world, that I changed careers. That was 20 years ago…
8:30 am: Monday meeting – LandVest is a private partnership, not designated agency, so we meet as a firm every Monday morning to share insights, and solve client problems, all with complete confidentiality. Today’s conversation ranged from dealing with knob-and-tube wiring to brainstorming for buyers looking for a specific vibe of waterfront property. Our teams from Maine to the Cape to the Adirondacks shared ideas from our inventory and of what might be brought to the market privately. We also talked deal flow and compared interest in second homes in the Post-9/11 and Coronavirus environments. With a highly experienced group, there’s plenty to draw on.
10:30 am: Organized a call with attorneys and advisors on behalf of a client looking to donate a major property to a charitable organization. LandVest has appraisers and land planners on staff, so we can handle answering complex questions for properties that might have potential beyond its current use.
11 am: Showing at Stillmeadow Farm, a conserved farm in Carlisle. LandVest has worked for more than two decades with the owners to help come up with a conservation and limited development plan, keeping the historic 18th-century landscape intact while retaining significant value for the family on over 100 acres. It had rained and frozen overnight so everything was sparkling.
7 pm: Board meeting for Bare Hill Rowing, one of many community-based programs supporting rowing for kids in the Greater Boston area. I was an elite rower and still love to row with other alums at the Head of the Charles every year. I am grateful to be able to give back.
8 am: Preparing proposals.
10 am: Working with our Boston marketing team on social media campaigns for listings.
2 pm: Loading new listings on REALM, our latest tool for broadening outreach for our properties. REALM uses big data and AI to match properties with the client lists of top brokers around the world.
4 pm: Working with my marketing coordinator, who is a genius, on a Christie’s newsletter to clients with properties and content from the LandVest blog.
7:30 am: Alumni conference at Harvard Business School on Investing and Climate Change: not surprisingly a top flight gathering. Business leaders are keen to address the risks and opportunities that a changing climate presents. At LandVest, we consider climate as we advise clients about their real estate, and our consulting practice is an industry-leading platform to help our clients and their advisors make informed decisions.
11 am: Into Boston for a series of meetings with fiduciaries and advisors, lots of mutual referrals. Our Boston headquarters are in the heart of the Financial District, across from the lovely Norman B. Leventhal Park, a great place for a quick coffee at Sip Cafe.
12 pm: Lunch sponsored by a multi-family office in Boston, seated with the next-door neighbors to a historic home that I sold several months ago on behalf of Groton School and Lawrence Academy. The neighbors were delighted that the new owners are doing a great job on the renovations (check out @lisa hicksinteriors’ Instagram stories and interview “Old House, New Life” with Lisa).
7 pm: Sudbury Valley Trustees Board meeting: The board is a mix of people I know from work with LandVest and those with whom I have bonded over land conservation.
11 am: Got a rush of showing requests for Long Hill Farm, a secluded 570+ acre property just outside of Woodstock, Vermont, on the way to Killington. In preparation for the showings, I look up the potential buyers on REALM, which has invaluable background information on high net worth individuals. I also run the names by my colleagues, and they know them from both Boston and from prior searches in Vermont. One couple came off a mailer we did to suburban Boston: the power of the LandVest network. Big reassurance for sellers and helpful in targeting our presentation of a property.
2 pm: Work with our marketing team to wrap up a market update for our blog and social media on the Woodstock market and review outreach for Myrtle Hill, a property that went under agreement quickly outside of Boston – a really cool combination of antique and MidMod.
6:30 am: Drive up to Peacham, Vermont in the Northeast Kingdom to visit Taylor Farm, a private listing. Taylor Farm feels like the perfect counterpoint to what ails the outside world. It’s like its own solar system, with worlds within worlds: a modern pavilion on the lake, a rustic-chic main house, a crazy cool indoor pool with a waterfall, a hilltop cabin with views to forever, cobble floored horse barn, indoor riding arena, and multiple guest houses, tucked at the end of a private road secluded from everything.
12 pm: We bring the whole team up to talk to the owners about the state of the market, and how we can work together to bring the right buyers to the property.
I just want to curl up with a book in one of the guest rooms. Plenty of snow in the Northeast Kingdom and the views on the drive up and back make the trip.
6:30 am: Woke up this morning with snow falling. I divide my time between Boston and Woodstock, Vermont.
10 am: Woodstock is the classic beautiful Vermont town and the view from the office window across the Town Green on a snowy day…can’t be beat. Then you add Story and Dia Jenks’ Jack Russell, BonBon…Some of the locals said hi.
Our office is in a beautiful old stone building right on the Green. It’s a great community, even as a part-timer I still get greeted by name when I pick up takeout.
11 am to 5 pm: Showings at Long Hill Farm: the weather has cleared and it is a bluebell day. We walk high up the mountain soaking up the sun and wishing we had skins and skis: the snow is just forgiving enough to be perfect spring conditions. The buyers’ four-year-old is tracking a bobcat’s fresh prints in the snow. That keeps her going just long enough to start heading back downhill. Tired, her father puts her on his shoulders and she gets a little drowsy in the sun.
The second showing is with enthusiastic skiers as well, so we hike back up the open fields to look over at Killington and take in the views.
On the way back home, I stop at the Woodstock Farmer’s Market for a quick bite and some locally raised food for dinner and say hello to friends.
5:30 pm: Most of the skiers have headed down earlier, but I am in a line of Mass and Connecticut plates and rooftop boxes heading back down to the highway. A great end to a beautiful weekend!
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON HOW LANDVEST CAN HELP, CONTACT RUTH KENNEDY SUDDUTH.