Happy to say the my husband was the lender on this deal. Janna, you are great to work with. I know that you and Kevin would move heaven and earth to get these folks into their home! Congrats!!!
I had to chuckle when I saw this email subject line from the escrow officer on my latest transaction:
Hallelujah and praise GOD ALMIGHTY - I got the wire!
That was the perfect way to sum up the most difficult real estate transaction I have had as a buyer's agent. It was an ordeal of monumental proportions, like the perfect storm of challenging conditions: a short sale, a looming deadline for the $8000 tax credit, an irrational seller, and out of control tenants.
What a journey we had! We submitted our offer back in January. Mike and Katie had lost out in competitive bidding situations with two other homes before finding this one. Love at first sight, the home was PERFECT!
Every short sale situation is different, but after checking the facts on this one, I believed it would work out for them, and in time to claim the tax credit. Our offer was accepted by the third party creditor in time, but then the flood gates of disaster opened.
Our seller was making demands of the lender. He was also making demands of us - although the deadline to close was May 21, he wanted to collect a full months rent from his tenants. We walked on egg shells to keep him from torpedoing the deal. If this home didn't close, Mike and Katie would lose out on the tax credit they needed in order to purchase a home. At one point he emailed me to tell me I made him gag when I asked for the damage deposit to be credited to the buyers at closing since they were inheriting the tenants...
Never give up! What we all know is that some things are just out of our control. As much as I would have loved to tell this guy to go jump in the lake, Mike and Katie needed this transaction to close. So I bit my tongue and pressed forward, determined to do everything within my power before conceding defeat. Last month I posted a little bit about his misplaced hostility towards my buyers.
Next, the appraisal came in, with good news and bad news. It was about $20,000 more than the purchase price! But HUGE problem - the appraiser rated the home as below average, which wouldn't fly on an FHA loan. The reason - the house was ABSOLUTELY FILTHY! The home would have to be cleaned satisfactorily and some repairs made, and re-inspected by the appraiser, then re-submitted to the underwriter for approval before we could close. We were able to get a one week extension on the closing date in order to satisfy the appraisal, but the seller would only agree to the extension if we signed an addendum saying, among other irrational things, that he had the right to sue them if they didn't go through with the purchase for any reason. The new deadline to close was still nearly a week before the tenants would be vacating the home. (And the question remained, WOULD they actually vacate...) We found that there were 5 adults, 8 kids and 3 huge dogs living there....
In the end, the listing agent and I each chipped in to bribe incentivize the tenants to leave 5 days early. Mike and Katie also bit their tongues, and helped the tenants move out when we discovered they were still in the home past the time they agreed to vacate, and then cleaned up their awful mess prior to the appraiser's re-inspection. Mike and Katie's lender, Kevin Garasky at KMG Mortgage Group, paid for the carpets to be professionally cleaned.
In the end, and under the wire, on pins and needles, the re-inspection was submitted to the underwriter. And then came the email from our escrow officer, Crissy Lowe at Pioneer Title, who herself had been put through the ringer, that said it all -
Hallalujah and praise GOD ALMIGHTY - I got the wire!
Mike and Katie, CONGRATULATIONS! May you build many years of happy memories in your new home. To see your beautiful little family get the home of your dreams, made everything we went through so worth it! THIS is the best part of my job!
Janna Rankin Scharf provides a superior level of real estate services to home buyers and sellers in Coeur d'Alene and Kootenai County, Idaho. Visit www.JannaScharf.com to search for homes in the Coeur d'Alene MLS for anywhere in spectacular North Idaho.
No matter how grand or modest your real estate dreams may be, you can turn to me in confidence. Give me a call today and let me know what I can do to be of service to you!
Janna Rankin Scharf AB, GRI, CSP, CNS, CLHMS 208.651.9700