Grab your coffee folks and snuggle up for a good ol’ fashion Real Estate story line that will make you feel ALL of the feels.
The story I am about to tell you contains REAL LIFE drama, greed, and a couple of absolutely LOVELY genuine buyers that I now am fortunate to call friends.
The process started like most real estate relationships, a laundry list of wants, a short list of “needs” and the desire and excitement to get us in the car and opening doors as fast as we could in this ever-competitive market with hopes to “find the perfect place to call home”…so cliche, but such is the dream.
One day, we fell in love with “the house on Dexter” (townhouse, which is important later) but for all intensive purposes, “the house on Dexter”. We showed it and loved its appeal, its floor plan, the basement, the patio! I quickly called the other agent to scope out our competition and get any details I could to get one leg up on any other offers we were competing against. It worked! My buyers were elated to hear their offer had been accepted and we were moving toward a closing date! The.next.day. we were told that it was the listing agents first deal and he had accidentally marked “FHA” approved when in actuality, the property CAN NOT go FHA and so, my buyers were faced with a tough decision…loose the house they love OR work on some fairly minor adjustments and get into a conventional loan. One issue, their new conventional loan also came with a new not-so-awesome $400/mo mortgage insurance premium. Ok, they will live on Mac n cheese (her words, but obviously not that dire of a situation) and they were willing to make some changes and continue on. Inspection, fine. Appraisal, fine. Loan, uh-oh. Turns out there was an extenuating circumstance with my buyers loan and in an incredibly rare situation (16 years and NEVER have I seen something like this) that now prevented them from going Conventional which turned out to be the final nail in the coffin and we had to terminate the contract because we could NOT get the FHA loan that was marketed available, or the conventional (expensive in this case) back up plan.
So, the next morning we were back in the car, opening doors.
We saw it, and instantly fell in love with “the house on 81st” (again, townhouse…I promise there is a point to this). Location good, patio great, floor plan good, we were READY! I followed the same protocol, sniffing for dirt or motivation or anything that would allow us to win and beat out the competition…it worked! Back under contract and ELATED just as before. Fast forward 26 days (twenty.six.days.people) and we receive a call from my buyers lender saying the appraisal came in $21K LOW! An appraiser felt that this home (listed at $275K, under contract for $285K was ONLY worth $264K). That is a hard pill to swallow for any seller, especially when sellers in this market are constantly hearing what “a great time it is to sell”. I knew I had my work cut out for me but low appraisals are NOTHING new. They are becoming a trend in the market as the entire industry is trying to “fight” the crazy inflation and help it be sustainable. Do I agree with THIS appraisal, NO. Not for the location or comparables, but fighting it is rarely successful and it was clear we were getting no where with that. SO, I called the other agent and plead our case. IF this appraisal was low (and FHA) it is now on record as appraising for $264K…IF your seller really thinks they can go back on the market and try to get MORE than what it appraised for (having to disclose that to every new buyer) go for it, but it seems to me that my buyers offer to scrounge up an additional $5K cash AND move closing up two weeks but let the seller stay in the property until the agreed upon time, should be satisfactory? We didn’t ask for anything on inspection, we paid more than required earnest money, because of the unfortunate situation on Dexter, our loan is all-but ready to close…come on dear one, work with me pleeeeease. Wait, scratch that…my buyers decided they want this place SO bad, they were able to come up with $10K more and are now offering $275K, your original offer price, sir! Now, folks…if you are out of coffee, go get more (or wine) this is about to take a turn. They said no! Ok, maybe not a HUGE shocker to everyone reading but here is the kicker….not only did they say NO to selling for the APPRAISED VALUE, they said “we are in NO hurry, this is in estate sale and we now want to go back on the market for $20K more than it appraised and WAIT for someone who is willing to pay the difference. That is $10,000 more than they HAD.IT.LISTED.FOR!
BRB. I need wine. (I typed this last night, please don’t worry about me).
Say what?! Greed. It IS a sellers market, it IS your right to try to hold your parents home and make top dollar but WOW. Hope your dad is proud (ok, that wasn’t nice).
So, we terminated (and possibly gave them the mental middle finger) and the next day, we were back in the car, opening doors.
Sunday night, they were on my heart. I went into the MLS to see what the heck I could find that would make all of (or at least some of) the heartache better…I saw one that was marked with a <3 in their search, but they hadn’t asked to see it. Just listed that morning, we had all day…nothing. I texted them and she said, “oh! I forgot about that one, maybe we can go tomorrow?”. Monday afternoon, they moved a dr appt and met me after the Hail storm of 2017 at the property…a house….not attached to anything but charm! The seller waited an extra three hours to respond to the pile of offers he had on the table so we could get in. It was clean, it had an updated kitchen, new cabinets (not painted like on Dexter), granite slab, hardwood, floors, a yard big enough for the shipping container pool the wife is after like you wouldn’t believe (maybe I’ll get to check it out one day, you know we are friends now!), a 2 car attached garage, dining room, plenty of beds and baths, newer roof, GREAT curb appeal. I was nervous. They CAN NOT take another heartache…I made my call, I got my info, I wrote my offer and we WON, I screamed, she cried…it was intense and funny!
BRB. Time to refill! (don’t judge how fast that was…I’m getting emotional here).
You guys, THIS is why I do what I do. THIS is the win that I love…for deserving clients who work hard and stick it out and in the end we WILL celebrate our achievement as they move into THEIR HOUSE, and good on THEIR GAS STOVE and have parties in THEIR BACKYARD. It all works out, there are bumps in the road, valleys and hills BUT in the end, I have had more buyers turn to me and say “It all worked out for the better” when something goes south!
Determination & Persistence paid off today and THIS win feels great!