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Don’t forget the basics

People -- not iPads -- sell houses

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Last week I stopped by one of my dad's job sites. He's a general contractor who has been blessed with a little bit of business this year, and I wanted to see how the latest custom-build job was coming along. Dad was downright ebullient as he gave me his "nickel tour" of the property. I, ever the dutiful daughter, oohed and aahed over the arched doorways and barrel-vaulted entry. Subcontractors scurried around us, with myriad tasks to complete before quitting time. As we neared the end of the tour, dad handed me a broom. "Just take a couple rooms and make 'em sparkle," he said. Yes. That's right. How could I have expected less? Just because I am over 30, married and four weeks away from giving birth to his first grandchild, that doesn't mean I can leave a jobsite without getting a job. "A successful business is all about the basics," or so says dad. Ugh. The basics. Remember those? Well, uh ... wait. Five years ago, if you had asked me, &quo...