I have advice for all of my friends in the real estate business. Check your tech. What does that mean? It can mean a lot if you don't. Recently, I had a situation that left me dumbfounded and confused. Here's what happened.
I have a listing that was under contract. Everything was moving along nicely. The buyer did the home inspection, had an appraisal and then decided she didn't want the house. The house is nearly perfect in every way. I was pretty surprised that she was backing out, but people do that.
The buyer's agent sent an email saying, "The buyer decided she doesn't want the house. The release is attached." Yes it was. I had opened the email on my iPhone and it was a one page release asking for the buyer to be released from the contract, the EMD released to her and no explanation.
Why did she want to back out? Was it a bad home inspection? Did she fail to get her financing? Did the neighbor's dog bite her and now she lives in fear? I had no idea. I did respond to the email with questions to which the buyer's agent began insulting me and demanding signatures or he would pursue legal action.
Later, I was back at my computer and I opened the email again to re-read the conversation with a cooler head, and attached to this email was the release request, a form voiding the contract and the home inspection report. The buyer was backing out because of the nearly flawless home inspection report. That was her prerogative.
The problem with the initial interaction was that my iPhone only showed a single page attached to the email. That caused the questions about why the client wanted out. My computer showed two pages and a home inspection report.
My advice to all is simple, check your tech. If something doesn't seem right, if it doesn't make any sense or if you really aren't sure what's going on, pick up the phone and call the other side. This is one time a phone call trumps a text or email hands down. If I had called the buyer's agent and asked my questions, I could have explained to him what I had received. It would have averted a nasty dust-up between two agents which included threats and counter-threats.
It was a tech issue. I did talk to our tech guy and he explained how something like that could happen. It is the first time I've ever had something that bizarre happen in all the years of using a cell phone for business. From now on, I will verify anything that seems strange on the surface. Check your tech!