Saturday, August 11, 2012

An Offering

Our house wasn't even on the market one week and we received a full price offer. My real estate agent told me that this couple loved the house and they really wanted it. I was skeptical. I had no reason to be skeptical beyond the fact that the offer came suspiciously fast and without any bartering. Nothing is ever that easy, especially when it comes to real estate.

The wife seemed to be driving the purchase, and when her agent told her I would be painting the interior, she wanted to be able to choose the paint colors. I was on a tight budget and had chosen to have one neutral color for all the rooms that hadn't been recently painted. I was afraid that she would want a different color for each room, and I had already changed the contract on my painter twice, and knew that he would put up a fight about me taking up anymore of his time deciding on colors. His consultations were free, but within limits. If I kept taking him away from other jobs to renegotiate our contract, he'd have to start charging me for his time.

My other fear was that if I let the buyer choose paint colors, she might want to choose the carpet too, and after working with two flooring companies, I found only one carpet that I could afford. If the buyers paid for the paint and carpet up front, I would not have cared so much, but they were expecting me to cover all the costs. That was too risky for me since they could back out of the deal anytime up until the property was appraised and inspected, which meant that the money that went out to pay for the more expensive interior upgrades could never be reimbursed, putting additional financial stress on my family.

I also found out that the seller expected me to paint all the rooms in the house, including those that had already been recently painted, which would have added quite a bit onto my bill. I wasn't willing to fuss around with paint colors not knowing if this deal would go all the way through to the end of escrow. If the buyer chose gaudy colors, I'd be stuck with them if the deal fell through, and that could not only be more expensive for me, but I may have a harder time selling the house to someone else who doesn't like the previous buyer's tastes. Most people can live with neutral colors, but once you start picking bright or dark colors with strong hues, you risk losing a sale.

The wife did put up a bit of a fit, but settled down, and I thought all was well. Suddenly, I received an addendum to cancel the contract on the house. What the real estate agent told me, what the buyers wrote in the addendum and what I heard from witnesses were all different regarding the reasons for this sudden cancellation. They varied from the buyers being fed up with having to postpone the inspection because the painting and flooring weren't done, to the buyers not trusting that I handled some mold cleanup from 12 years before correctly despite there being no mold in the house since, to the buyers seeing the neighbors' property and not wanting to live next to hoarders, to the buyers not realizing that it was a horse property and being fearful of flies.

None of this made any sense to me until I found out that the buyers made the offer sight unseen, only to show up to view the house halfway through escrow. I'm not sure how they could have missed the part about it being a horse property, because that is exactly how it was advertised. There were pictures of the barn and round pen with a description of there being room for three horses. I guess their real estate agent just described it to them over the phone in his own words. There were so many botched communications about the house between my agent and their agent that there was no way this deal could have ever succeeded.


Cheryl Ann said...

They didn't even go SEE the house? That's strange...I often just drive around one of the little mountain communities myself to see what's up for sale...

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Ugh! What a waste of your time and energy!


achieve1dream said...

People are so stupid!!!! Who in their right mind would try to buy a house sight unseen?????