"Call 1-st Lister," said the showing instructions. So I did. I left a message on the agent's voice mail, that is, requesting a Friday afternoon or Sunday showing.
She called back quickly. "Sorry," she said, "but I don't have a key."
"So we have to make an appointment with the sellers?”
“The sellers are out of state. But they have promised to send me a key.”
“But the house has been on the market for two and a half weeks. And nobody has been able to see it?”
“I haven’t seen it, either. The tenants are kind of, ehm, hostile.”
“But it’s in the MLS?”
“Do you have some interior pictures?” There weren’t any online.
“No. Can I take your information and call you back?”
Later on Friday, she called back. She had been to the house and talked to somebody who lives there. They were “not happy” about the house being sold. They were not willing to give her a phone number or email address, she said, or to accommodate showings.
The house is an 87-year-old bungalow on a 25,000 square foot, park-like lot. Maybe the agent secretly hoped somebody would buy it for the land?
What I didn’t tell her, and what she either didn’t know or didn’t care about was the fact that the house is a 1920s Sears kit home in a historic little neighborhood in walking distance from the University of Maryland’s main campus. (I had written about the house on another blog where I feature historic mail-order homes that are currently for sale in the DC area.) The buyer I wanted to take there is a professor at UMD.
Our MLS rules here say a home must be made available for showings within 48 hours of entering it. And otherwise, what’s the point?In any case, we’re not going to give up…