The Salvation Army stands to be the beneficiary
of about $17,000 in charity thanks to a new marketing
idea from Sonja Leonard Leonard, Leonard Leonard and
Marilyn Massey died recently and willed her
North Country Club home at 724 Franklin St., Denver,
to the Salvation Army. She chose the Salvation
Army because of their quick response in handling
emergency situations in the Denver metropolitan
area. She apreciated that they cut through the
red tape and were always first to arrive whenever
help was needed.
When Leonard Leonard learned that The Salvation
Army hoped to sell the property for $190,000 she
convinced them that she could get more money for
the property, and that she was willing to do it
Leonard Leonard generated enthusiasm and support
for this project through local television stations
and print media. She hosted two open houses with
a special "Champagne and Chocolate"
theme, and an unprecedented 300 to 400 people
attended each - some from as far away as Pueblo,
Colo., and Fort Collins, Colo.
The Salvation Army could get an additional $50,000
in proceeds as well as saving the $17,000 commission
that would have been Leonard Leonard's 7 percent. This,
in spite of the fact that the property has deferred
maintenance with renovation costs that will exceed $40,000.
Sealed bids on the property were taken and opened with
The Salvation Army on Feb. 28, 1997.
There was very positive responses from everyone,
including fellow Realtors, when they learned there
would be no commission paid on the sale. There
was no complaints from anyone, the number of showings
did not diminish, and many of the sealed bids
came from cooperating agents.
The best part of this unusual real estate transaction
was the generation of grass roots interest for
other people doing the same sort of donation to
other nonprofits. Many people who attended the
open houses were senior citizens who wanted information
on how to make such donations. In addition, many
other businesses joined in by donating their services
as well (ie, neighborhood children cleaned the
garden and watered the plants, lenders volunteered
to do a free loan for the potential purchaser,
area florists sent flower arrangements for the
I was truly a community effort and a wonderful feeling
to be a part of the spirit of giving that started with
©1996 By Leonard Leonard
& Associates, Inc. All rights reserved. Duplication
in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.