I have been a long time lurker, looking for some encouragement. Long story short our house has been on and off the market since 2008. Last month we finally had a decent offer which we excepted. The inspection, appraisal and title all went through easily.. all they want was radon mitigation system.. no problem. So the Friday before closing, May 18th my realtor called to say that the buyer wanted to show the house to her daughter..I agreed reluctantly as we had boxes everywhere and were moving stuff to our temporary location. Then my realtor said she has second thoughts but there was less than 1% chance she would back out. Her husband showed up with her, no daughter. Apparently he wants the house but she has mental issues and was anxious. So DH and I had a distressing weekend wondering if we were going to close on the 21st. Got the call on Monday that they backed out. No real reason other than wife had second thoughts.. I am devastated.
Sorry to hear that, glider. Stuff definitely happens. Hoping you negotiated an adequate deposit to at least (partially) compensate you for the time, trouble and overall angst. Better luck with your next transaction.
Best to both of you -
I'm so sorry to hear that!!! A seller's worst fear..... As RErocker said, I hope that the deposit will be helpful, but that is just really horrible......
So sorry to hear about your bad news. Hoping someone else steps in right away.
My favorite state, too - don't know if you're along the coast but perhaps the summer season will encourage another buyer to promptly replace them.
Lots of luck to you -
Well I wish I could say the deposit was adequate.. it was only $1000.00. I just did not give it much thought as you would think the buyer, a doctor and his wife another professional would honor their contract. My Realtor did not say anything about the deposit either so I thought it was okay. Our lawyer is handling it now. They had no reason for backing out. They just want to give us the $1000.00 but we may sue for breach of contract and all the damages etc...
I am not one to sue but this has caused immense strain on us physically and mentally. Not to mention financially.
Thank you for the reply's.
I'm so sorry that happened! I would sue for specific performance too. It's ridiculous at this late date they had "second thoughts".
You've been put through the wringer, emotionally and financially and "second thoughts" is NOT a reason to break a contract for sale. Well, it might be her reason, but it's not a legal reason.
I would want every single bill I incurred getting ready to sell the house, including the radon mitigation, to be reimbursed...plus another 10k for the aggrivation...at the minimum!
Please keep us updated.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
Exactly what we are thinking. I will keep you posted. Money is not a problem with these guys or I would not push it. We are all struggling in some way, but this was down right mean. They even walked through the Friday before and could see all the boxes and empty rooms. Yet still kept us on the hook all weekend. Til the last minute before closing. Needless to say I am very mad as well.
I will keep everyone posted. If anyone has had any experience with a situation like this please let me know your outcome.
That is terrible! I'm not sue happy either, but I would definitely want to be reimbursed for all the stress, hassle, and fees incurred because of them backing out.
I hope you get a stable buyer very soon!!!
Normally in situations like this, the professionals in the real estate industry recommend sellers concentrate on getting their property back on the market as quickly as possible rather than spending time/energy suing buyers for "specific performance" when the contract has been breached.
However, considering that these buyers breached without a legally defensible reason AND did so on the day of closing no less, I would not hesitate to sue for damages (if not a suit to force the buyers to complete the transaction as contracted).
I'm sorry this has happened to you.
I am so sorry for what happened to you. There is a lesson here for all of us though. I have told our story on these boards many times.We collected only a $5000.00 deposit on our home but we had to put $25,000 down on the home here in fl. The things that were done to us by FL realtor was disgusting, never ever give a large deposet, ever.The home we were selling also had given us worry the day before passing papers,the buyers husband kept saying are you sure you want to go through with this? At this point we had two mortgages, the new house and the one they were now debating about backing out on. Don't ever buy a house until you have passed papers on the one you own. Good luck and I know that all will be fine in the end.This message has been edited. Last edited by: flboy,
Luckily in our situation we were moving to a family property and do not have to pay rent. We already own another building were my husband has his office. Our plan is to build a home above the offices. It is an old Grange Hall right on the lake. So yes things could be a lot worse. We are downsizing. The other bad thing about this is the week these buyers put the contract on our house we had at least two other serious buyers. That was over a month ago... I do want to get this house back on the market. But considering the way this happened we have to look into suing.
If you sue to recover expenses only (versus suing for specific performance) you can do so concurrent with getting your house back on the market. I hope your realtor has already been in touch with the realtors for the other two serious buyers.
I'm sure you already understand, glider, that your remedies primarily depend upon both the contract terms and applicable state law.
Sorry to hear that you accepted such a minimal deposit. Forgive me if the following sounds like 20-20 hindsight - I'm posting primarily for others in cyberspace who might be contemplating transactions. Personally, I would never recommend to any of my (seller) clients that they accept such a minimal amount, in any type of local market. (On the flip side, I've never been involved in a transaction on the buyers' side with such a minor amount, either.)
Yes, deposits vary depending on both the situation and local market. Some may say that 2% - 5% is standard; in other areas or sellers' markets, they could be as high as 5% - 10%. Even in smaller transactions, a minimum amount is necessary, IMHO. Although I agree that, for most transactions, 25K is usually excessive, we frequently see amounts exceeding that in high-value transactions.
Doesn't matter to me who the buyers are or represent themselves to be. It's simply not worth the time and trouble. What's the saying - when someone tells you who they are, believe them. These people definitely told you who they are by disrespecting you with that offer; I'm sorry to say, glider.
You also probably understand that the other buyers will most likely be gone by this point in time. Sounds like you have a desirable property, however, so I'm thinking positive thoughts for you and expecting/hoping the situation resolves itself smoothly and easily.
JMHO, as usual.
glider, Like all of the others, I am sorry this happened to you and that the deposit was so minimal; however, I am looking at the situation from another point of point. And that point of view is that the stress and financial hardship you have already incurred is, unfortunately, going to be increased ten-fold if you decide to pursue litigation.
Do you even know what "specific performance" is? It means that eventually - after months or even years of on-going, extended legal procedures - you are asking a judge to order these people to "perform" what they had promised to do - buy your house. Probably not going to happen.
But, in the meantime, you are going to incur attorney fees plus more costs plus additional stress which is going to make this initial disappointment look like a drop in the bucket compared to protracted litigation! Sorry, just the way the real world works.
Of course, you may very well be able to find a lawyer - try one of those who advertise on TV - who will take it on a contingency meaning they will take a percentage of any recovery instead of charging you fees on an hourly basis. Of course, those attorneys are simply hoping for a quick cash settlement but what if that doesn't happen? Or, what if they are judgment-proof?
You are the ones who have to take time from your lives to document all your claims, keep appointments, etc. and basically put yourself in a position of not moving forward for an unknown amount of time. Will it be worth it?
I don't think so. Instead, I suggest that you take a deep breath, step back and re-evaluate your position before taking action you may come to regret. Yes, what happened was unfortunate and you may very well have been wronged by these people but there is an old saying in the legal world that is applicable here. It's called "the principle rubbing the pocketbook." Starts out with "it's the principle of the matter" and ends with a whimper when the pocketbook starts hurting.
If I were in your shoes, I'd complete the move you have already started, get settled and get the place back on the market immediately. If you have already had serious interest in it, chances are that you will be able to find others with that interest but NOT if you tie it up in litigation. Good luck and let us know what you decide to do.
Actually, Idaho, you and I were looking at it the same way. Thanks for expressing the concerns I was summarizing/alluding to in my previous post's first and last sentence.
Besides the specific items you mentioned, a great deal depends upon whether (or not) the contract includes any or all of the following: an arbitration clause, liquidated damages clause and an attorneys' fees clause, among other things. Incidentally, contingency fee cases are not necessarily entirely free to the plaintiff.
This is precisely why the deposit amount (IMHO) is so critically important - and why I decided to post about it again, even though I had stressed it on other threads.
Glider, best wishes as you and your spouse decide the best way to move forward from this experience.
Good points about the law suit for specific performance...her house would be tied up and she wouldn't be able to sell it.
I also agree that suits can take years and be costly.
Maybe they could make a claim for damages in small claims court? I don't know what the max for the claim is in her state but it might be worth it to cover some of the costs.
This situation is so aggrivating that it seems as if she should be able to do something.
glider...glad that you are moving into property that you don't have to put a lot of money into. If you were counting on the closing of your house to finance the new one, it would have been so much worse.
Good luck with the move. I agree that in your situation the best thing would be to just go ahead and move then put your house back on the market.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
Thank you so much for your input, all of you. You know Rerocker and Idaho I never gave the deposit a second thought. Now that I am going through this, I do not know why my Agent did not say something either. Our house is selling for over $300,000. The disrespect comment is right on. Even though I am very upset, our house is active again on MLS as of today.
I do not want to tie the house up in litigation. I just want to move on. However, we are staying in the same town. I live in Central Maine. Everyone knows everyone. News of this transaction has already traveled far. So I am thinking that people will hesitate to do business with this "Well respected Doctor" and his wife in the future.
Not one agent around here has ever had something like this happen. Apparently. Big lesson learned, I am not accepting anything less than 2% down if we get another offer.
Thank you again everyone.
If anyone cares to give opinions, the MLS Id is 10138953. These are old pictures. Any feedback is welcome. Remeber this is Maine and we definitely do not try to keep up with the rest of the world.
Another possibility (to discuss with your lawyer) is suing them with the goal of settling quickly out of court. I'm not an attorney and understand the good advice of people here to check your contract and state law, but if both of those allow, you could sue for all the out of pocket costs they forced you to incur, plus some amount for the intangibles and the difference between the price they agreed to and the price you might likely get in the future. They might not agree to all of this, but they might agree to a lot more than $1000, and you have certainly lost more than that and aren't seeking to get rich at their expense.
I'm really sorry you went through this.
Can you provide a link? Realtor.com doesn't recognize this MLS number. Using search engines, MLS 10138953 brings up a property in Minnesota and in Washington DC, plus a link to this thread.
Can you tell me how to send the link... not sure how to access it.
If your home is in Wedgewood - it is gorgeous! It's beautiful inside, and other than the critter on the fireplace, I think it's wonderful. I know hunting is normal there, but there could be some non-hunters looking at the home, and it is a tiny bit scary to me, anyway..... . Best of luck - and I truly believe in karma, and you are in a small town, and those karma always wins in the end.....
Oh thank you Debiin. We did take down the bear. My husband's trophy. He did say often, "maybe I should take the Bear down".. Thank you again for the compliments. I need to have new pics taken as I have improved the bedrooms. I appreciate your feedback. Also, good luck to you in Florida. Someday that is what DH and I want to do. We love Florida.
Somehow people will separate their house transactions with their health care. Not meaning to hurt/insult you. One one of the boards, someone showed the BEST photography showcasing the rooms. It was fabulous. I will try to find that link. Best wishes for a quick sale.
GWENDA at the link talked about the photography that sold her house. The listing has expired about the photos were amazing!
http://boards.hgtv.com/eve/for...1009313/m/7243944857This message has been edited. Last edited by: happy 9,
glider, Glad you have decided to move on instead of spinning your wheels in what might just become a no-win situation. As far as still trying to go after them in a civil or small claims action? Well, totally your choice, of course, but a word to the wise. Think it will be difficult to prove any claims for costs since you would have had to incur those costs anyway upon the sale of the house (which will hopefully happen soon) and many states require proof of physical illness/injury/damage before allowing the subjective realm of hurt feelings, anger and stress allowed into evidence. Myself, in your shoes? I would just move on.
Thank you for posting your listing number and I can see that you have a GREAT place but, sadly, the photographs doesn't reflect that so I am glad that you are considering new photographs!
Why do I say that? Well, you have a 3/2 with 17 photographs with ONE photograph of ONE bedroom with rumpled coverings and ONE photograph of a tub - while TEN photographs show every angle of your kitchen, FR, LR - after the first five, they are redundant. So what is up with that??? Just choose five of the best ones that will allow you to add five more of what people really want to see (bedrooms/bathrooms) or, better yet, re-do the photographs.
Need new photographs - one of each bedroom and each bathroom - minimum - maybe two of the master bedroom. Glad the bear is gone. For the exterior front shot, pull back and show a bit more how the house is situated in the locale - looks to me to be a BEAUTIFUL location but simply isn't being shown to its full potential.
Exchanging the existing 17 photographs with new ones will probably jump-start interest in your place since it has been on the market for some time (over 180 days which shows "stale" on most sites) and, hopefully, bring a new buyer who knows what they want - your place! The generic photograph of the lake isn't selling your place and neither is the one with the trees with the car highlighted!
The lake shot from your backyard is great, the entry room the same. Start over with a new exterior shot taken from further away, keep the existing close-up of the front, then three of the kitchen, two of the FR and two in the LR, then six - one each of the three bedrooms and two bathrooms with an extra of the master bedroom. Room for an extra here - do you have a laundry room? Then one more for the back deck or wherever you sit outside to enjoy your lake-side home. Put them all in order as a person would see when walking through your home and end with that great photograph showing your back yard down to the lake.
So, that would be 17 photographs to exchange for your existing 17. And, I would also take it off the MLS listing since it showing to be so stale while doing the new photographs. Savvy buyers will realize that it is an old listing revived but think you might get a resurgence in interest when done. JMHO - wishing you good luck!
Oh, Glider, yukkerdoodles. Shame on those buyers! Very, very sad.
I agree with everyone, just move on, lesson learned. Actually surprised your realtor didn't suggest an increase in their initial deposit but, lesson learned.
Keep us in the loop.
About photographs...when we sold our house a couple of years ago I took my own photos with my digital camera and they turned out great.
I staged each room just before I took the picture and took them in the best light possible for that particular area. The foyer looked beautiful in the morning sunlight but not so great in darker afternoon, so I took that pic in the morning. I took at least 3 or 4 of each room and then picked the best shot.
In the bedrooms I made sure each looked as spiffed as possible. I even moved things out of the picture range that didn't show that well, like a waste basket.
I put flowers in the dining room and my kitchen never looked so decluttered...never has since either. Each shot was as perfect as I could make it.
Once I had gotten all my pictures just right, I burned a copy for my Realtor and he used them for the MLS. I told him when we signed the listing that I'd be doing my own photos and he was happy with that and very pleased with the pictures when he got them. I don't have a fancy digital camera either, just a medium priced, good quality one.
Everyone uses the internet for home shopping nowdays and you can make someone fall in love with your house before they ever see it in real life if you take fabulous pictures of it.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
I tried to find your listing by the mls number but it says that the listing can't be found.
Can you post the direct link?
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
I, unfortunately, know how you feel and I am sooooo veryyyyy sorry! We had a near exact thing happen to us TWice in the past. We didn't sue, but I hope you can and get mega bucks...I don't know why people do this!?!???!!!
I am not sure how to post a direct link but the correct number is 1013895
Try this link:
Very nice house! I bet you'll have another offer soon, especially with summer coming.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
Thank you for posting the listing link CCM - here's what I am thinking. CCM your are the Interior designer - what do you think..about this..
... The fireplace wall needs to be different. I am thinking remove the bear head and store it away, and do not re hang during marketing.
See if there is a way you can hang the TV over the fireplace.
Remove everything else on that wall and paint it a color -= like that in the fireplace.
I would remove the dark brown chair and move in the other 3 pieces a little closer to the fireplace and place a nice area rug there.
Animal rugs, heads, religious items, personal
photos, too many art pieces, wild colors of art or distasteful art, too many wall colors all can be distracting and hinder a possible sale.This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
Lovely, gorgeous home, Kathy. I'm not surprised you had a previous offer.
Had some of the same thoughts as REL WRT the greatroom. Overall, it feels dark and crowded. Don't know if you've already moved and removed the furniture, Kathy. Have you?
If not, I'd remove at least 50% of the heavy furniture and set up a conversation area closer to/around the f/p. B/c it's so close to the entryway, instead of closing off that side and having buyers walk into a chair, I'd leave that open. In fact, you might consider going down to only the couch, area rug and a larger, rectangular/square coffee table (if available) in front of the f/p so buyers can see through to the sunporch as they enter the home.
I would repaint the brown wall in a neutral tone, using a paint chip to coordinate/tone down the gold walls. At the same time, I would repaint the brown wall from the entryway - plus any other dark walls in the home, e.g. the master bath, other dark bathroom walls and the small bedroom's accent wall. In addition, I would paint out the bedroom wall with the circles(?). Throughout the home, I'd suggest a neutral color - no blue - and make sure the rooms flow together.
Going back to the very important greatroom, in conjunction with painting, I'd remove all of the small items (all wall accessories, shelf, small tables) and the monster TV (plus its paraphernalia) from that area. Can the small TV from the kitchen be mounted above the mantel?
Or, if you moved the small TV, consider using a faux staging TV. Alternatively, a tall, narrow mirror or narrow piece of colorful art there might emphasize the area's volume ceiling. If you do use a a mirror or TV/faux TV above the mantel, you might try a larger art piece on the wall to the right of the f/p.
To liven up the area, a large plant on the hearth might work wonders. Other than that, you wouldn't need much - say a grouping of 3 accessories or candles on the coffee table. Less would definitely be more for that area, IMHO.
I would angle one of the larger/lighter leather chairs in that right corner and set up a reading nook with a floor lamp, colorful angled throw on the chair and pillow. Some of the excess furniture could be used to restage the sunporch (if you remove all the office items) as a pleasant sitting area, e.g. two chairs w/small table inbetween plus another throw rug and lighting. As REL mentioned, eliminate the large, brown chair, however.
WRT the kitchen area, I would remove all of the small items on the counters, 2 of the island stools and go down to only 4 chairs for the table. Can a leaf be removed from that table? I would also center the table (no angling) and center/swag the large light that's blocking the kitchen window over it. (I'd probably just replace the large kitchen light with a potlight.)
Let me know the status of your move and if you're interested in doing more staging, before I spend add'l time posting. IIRC, the only thing that involved any cost in my suggestions was the painting and potlight mentioned above. ETA: and making a couple of inexpensive headboards, below. WRT any other furniture and/or accessories, I would try to use what you have or consider borrowing it from f&f, if necessary.
The kitchen area can be finished off by setting the breakfast area (plates/bowls, colorful cloth napkins, glasses but no flatware) and flowers for showings or a colorful bowl of limes/lemons/fruit. A nice centerpiece or healthy plant would finish off your table. WRT the counters, you could stage only 1-2 large items angled in the corners - maybe a colorful cookie jar or clean, nice coffee pot.
Kathy, if you're interested in hearing more, let me know. Again, IDK if you already moved out your furniture. In general, I would remove all the items blocking the circulation in your pantry, at least 50% of the foodstuffs and all the blocking items in your laundry area. (You might consider neutralizing the orange paint.)
The swag bathroom lamp (?) can go - and also all the dark shower curtains. At minimum, I'd open up those curtains to show off your nice tile (hopefully) bath areas. WRT the bedrooms, do you have any neutral bedspreads to use? In addition, you might consider making some inexpensive headboards to emphasize your wonderful ceilings. Let me know if you'd like any suggestions for those.
If you have the furniture, I'd consider staging the br with the twin bed as an office - only a desk facing door plus chair. Or, is there an area at the rear of the greatroom (out of frame in the photos) that would work for a small desk and chair? The miscellaneous file cabinets and office tables and all office clutter s/b removed. Might be preferable to place a desk in the greatroom b/c you have a 3 bedroom. (Who's your target/expected buyer - a young family?)
Overall, I would try to bring the outdoors in when staging your home. How close is the pond, BTW? Do you have an outdoor deck/patio available to stage?
WRT the furniture placement, sometimes you just need to move it around until you find the best arrangement. Definitely looks like you need an improved set of photos.
All of the above, JMHO.
You have a terrific home! Wishing you the best as you move on with this process.This message has been edited. Last edited by: RErocker,
Well we have two possibly three showings for this weekend! I have to stay positive. We are meeting with our lawyer tomorrow just to tie things up. I will update everyone as to what our options are after we sell our home, if any.
RErocker...great suggestions and lots of thngs anyone can use if they are selling their house. Keep it uncluttered, open and as neutral as possible.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
Glider, I really like the layout of your home. Good luck this weekend - I'm sure everything will work out.
Absolutely good luck this weekend! Keep those buyers coming.... New photos, fresh look - great idea! All my fingers, and toes are crossed for you.....
Just wanted to update everyone. We did get another offer which will be a few hundred dollars higher than the contract we lost. They do not want an inspection. Which I think is weird. The only down side is they have a house under contract. After what happened last time I am not even one bit excited about this contract. We did require 1% down. We also can still show the house and except another offer. So we shall see how it goes. Thank you to everyone for your support.
Best wishes for this one to go through. Is their purchase of your house contingent on theirs selling?
yes, but we are still showing.
Fingers crossed that this one will go through... when will you know?????
Thinking good thoughts for you!
Just an update. Things with new contract still going along. Both of us are waiting for appraisal. I am so relieved that I do not have to go through the inspection thing again. Cannot believe new buyers did not want inspection. Does anyone know if after closing should buyer find something wrong with house, but opted out of inspection, can they still come after us? Not that I anticipate this but I just want to be done.
Closing date is set for Jul 12.
Hope things keep going along well.
I'm pretty sure they can't come after you unless they can prove you knowingly knew of a defect and didn't disclose it or tried to hide it.
Maybe the husband is in construction and can look the house over himself.
~Jean~ in garden zone 6b
So happy things are moving forward for you!
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