Trying to sell your house these days can feel as pointless and protracted as Britney Spears’ custody battle; there seems to be no point, and there seems to be no end. Britney has been able to tie up her case, but what about you? Well, I have an idea for you…
From Reno to Charlotte to Milwaukee, people have started talking about Joe. Not a steaming cup of coffee, but St. Joseph, who was the earthly father of Jesus and a carpenter by trade, now considered the patron saint of home and family in the Catholic Church.
Folklore and tradition allege that burying a St. Joseph statue on a seller’s land will expedite the sale of the home. The practice seems to have begun with a nun who, in the 16th century, buried a St. Joseph medallion and prayed over it, seeking the saint’s intercession before God on the nuns’ behalf to procure land for their new convent. And it’s a tradition that has been creating a buzz online and getting national media attention over the past several years.
Rub a saint’s face in the dirt and get what you want
And there just might be some other applications, too. Ex-husband living too close by? Have neighbors you don’t like? Or maybe there’s a gorgeous property you’ve been eyeing for months and the owners refuse to put it on the market. Sneak over under cover of darkness and carefully plant a St. Joseph statue in their yards and you could be rid of them forever! Maybe someone could bury one under the rose garden at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and see what happens! As was noted in a customer testimonial on a Saint Joseph website, “I don’t need a statue; I need a Democrat in the White House.”
And what if you’re not superstitious or religious, but wouldn’t mind selling your house a little faster? Well, take the advice of one real estate agent from Fredericksburg, Texas: “I firmly believe in the power of St. Joseph, [but] it also helps to make sure it is priced right, clean, and show ready.”
It would probably be better to bury a saint of patience or financial prudence in your backyard, or maybe a statue of a real estate guru. Somebody should start marketing statues of the guy who’s made all the money off this tradition – Phil Cates, founder of St. Joseph Statue in Modesto, CA. After all, he is obviously blessed in the area of selling things for a profit. I bet he could intercede to God on my behalf. Or maybe as one blog commenter suggested, we should just bury our real estate agents.
Bury a statue of St Joseph? Millions of people have done that before
Over a million St. Joseph Home Selling Kits are sold each year, so somebody sure is buying into the tradition. But is it superstition or faith? From a religious standpoint, if the statue
serves as a physical reminder of the homeowner’s faith in God to provide for their financial needs, then it is faith. If the statue is buried in the yard and never thought of again like spontaneously buying a lottery ticket while filling your tank, that would be superstition. And if God and St. Joseph are not thanked profusely when the house sells, or if the poor fellow is left buried in the yard to get muddy and frozen and forgotten – well then that’s just plain mean.
So what do you actually get in a St Joseph Home Selling Kit? Well, some retailers sell the statue, complemented by the following: a small 3-4” St Joseph Statue, Special Prayer Card, protective storage bag, burial instructions, and sometimes a prayer guide or history pamphlet. Now you can even buy those kits with two saints included. Totally Catholic.com claims that…” We…now have five other versions available, including our new “Miraculous Double Novena St. Joseph/St. Jude house selling kit” for that house that is especially hard to sell!” (St. Jude is the Patron Saint of the lost cause.) Apparently one holy saint isn’t always good enough.
What’s the price for one of those house selling statues?
Typical statues and home-selling kits seem to sell online for anywhere from $1.75 to $25.00 online, with the majority being between $8 and $13. If you would rather read a book than surf the web, check out Stephen J. Binz’s 2003 paperback titled St. Joseph, My Real Estate Agent: Why the Patron Saint of Home Life is the Patron Saint of Home-Selling.
Now if they would just come up with a saint for selling your car…
– Kirstie Parker
- G.S. Kauldring
- Angelica Artiaga
- Teresa S
I just wanted to say that in 2008 I was selling my house as I was getting married and moving to my new husband's house, but didn't think my house would sell since houses in my neighborhood had been for… Read more.
I was doing some research on St. Joseph and decided to order the home kit. Our home had been on the market 2 weeks with a few showings. The night i buried St. Joseph my family thought I was nuts. In… Read more.