Yesterday, I started a post on A Nightmare to Remember about former clients of mine, who we were on our way out the door to the closing, when the Buyer Agent called and told me the closing was off, because of a square footage difference.
In our MLS in Ann Arbor, Michigan we use the mlxchange system. We add in square footage and there is a field where we can name the source of the square footage.
Typically you will see:
Assessor, builder, owner, measured, appraisal or if the basement is finished you will see, plus 1000 S.F. in fin/LL.
The buyer agent called me and told me that the buyer’s attorney had told him he should get a reduction in the price of $20,000 because of the 500 S.F. difference. A typical appraiser in Ann Arbor will give a difference of $20.00 to $40.00 per square foot. When I am doing a market analysis I always use $30.00 right in the middle.
Immediately, I called my real estate attorney to get his advice. He looked the buyer’s attorney up in the law resource book and made the comment, “you’ve got your work cut out for you, as he has a reputation for taking these cases, running up a bill etc”.
There was a ten thousand dollar EMD on the line. The agent for the buyer told the buyer he would lose the EMD money, if he did not close because all the contingencies were removed and the loan had funded.
No matter, he sued me, the buyer agent, and the sellers to get his money back.
I told my sellers to move back into the house and we would get another offer. They would not move back in, they had taken a week off work to move. So they missed another payment. This makes two missed payments.
I got another offer rather quickly, in a few days. Only now the loan was sold and the one lender Country Wide would not talk to me, as they did not have the loan anymore in their file. The other lender would not talk to me because they said they did not have the loan on the books yet. (Yes, we had an authorization form signed)
The new buyer waited patiently for three weeks to hear if they would accept his offer and then he had to find a home for his family. They were disappointed but they found another house. So if you are counting we have now had 4 offers on this house. ( Andrew, know where I am going with this?)
My former clients hired a different attorney, not mine. This attorney was also a Realtor! He told them to let the house go to foreclosure, that in a couple of years they would be able to purchase again. (He had done this with his own daughter.)
After the two mortgage companies did not respond to the offer, my clients asked me take the house off the market as they were going to let it go into foreclosure. So against my advice and better judgment, I did what they asked and withdrew the listing.
One day, several weeks later, I was driving in my car and had them on my heart and called them up.
“Hi, how are you?”
“How are you all doing?”
“I’ve been thinking about you and your family and just wanted to check in.”
To my utter surprise, she told me they had just listed the house again with the Attorney/Realtor. That day!
To be continued…