Circle of Life In Real Estate. Demolition. Real (Estate) Short Story.

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408

Circle of Life In Real Estate.  Demolition.  Real (Estate) Short Story.

My client is buying an Intracoastal-front home. He thinks that he wants a boat. He is a medical doctor, always on the phone, always ready to put the gloves on and get the scalpel.

He is yet to find out that the happiest day for a man is when he sells his expensive boat. 

Right now he still thinks that the happiest day in man's life is when he buys it. In reality when you buy it, it is the second happiest day, the first is when you sell, they just happen in life not in the right order... But I digress...

If a man wants a boat, he is thinking about the dock. And this home does not have a dock. Big-big thing. But the Seller says you can have a dock. And that the DEP has nothing against it, and that the permit to construct the dock is in the works with the City of Daytona Beach.

Dock on the Intracoastal - Jon ZolskyThere is a little problem, though. You may have the right to build a dock, but there is no place for it. the neighbor south put her dock wrong according to the Seller. And, of course, right according to the owner of the property just south.

To makes things worse, the neighbors are not particularly friendly to each other. And the home south of the subject property is in foreclosure, so sending the owner demands for fixing the problem is not really going to work. The Seller ordered a Riparian Rights Survey, spend money on it, and it allegedly shows that "our" Seller is right, and the lady to the south is wrong. The lady, however, claims that ohter 10 people are wrong and she has another "right" survey.

Meanwhile, my buyer is not going to get into this mess. He wants some clarity, and some peace of mind, that he can have his dock a be able to get his boat there, and have it all legally. So, in order to sell, something has to be done. And what can you do here? Force the neighbor, who is in foreclosure, to fix the problem? Why would she? She knows, and she did not do anything, so why expect anything different? The Seller needs to sell, and can't afford waiting until the foreclosure is through, and then the new owner (not the lender that gets the property back) is found, and until the new owner takes care of the problem.

Well, the Seller and his contractor found an interesting way to deal with that. They took the survey to the City and applied for .... demolition permit. Yep, a permit allowing them to remove the encroaching part of the dock. The City struggles with it, but legal department confirmed that it is legal, so the permit was issued this Monday. Along with the permit to construct a new dock, which could simply not come at any better time for my Buyer.

Yesterday I met the contractor in the City, where he gets the permit, and I give him the deposit to start demolition (Buyer agreed to pay for it). At noon we have the inspection scheduled. I am told that the Seller will come to let the instpector in.

We still need to get the check to the inspector, so my assistant (aka my wife) takes the check to the property. 20 minutes later she calles me from the site saying something is going on there.

Well, the demolition crew came in the morning. When they started taking the end of the dock down, the tenant in this house called the Landlord, and she rushed there. By the time she came, the owner of the subject property came to open the door for the inspection. The Listing and the co-listing agents came, as the Seller called them.

Boat - jon zolskyThe landlord, called Police, and Police came. She also called her attorney, who was trying to talk to everybody on the phone. The owners started arguing. Police asked for the permit and the permit was produced. The attorney spoke to the police demanding to stop the work, but the officer told him that he couldn't as the permit was OK. Someone called the city, and code enforcement officer arrived at the seen. The police officer was invited inside the house, and turned out the landlord had another issue with the code enforcement, as she had two kitchens in the property zoned as residential single family dwelling, so the police officer witnessed the violation, and told the attorney that the landlord had another problem on her hands.

The tenant is angry and confused. He hears that the property is in foreclosure, the listing agent throws at him that he should not probably pay rent, because of that, and to add to that bouquet of problems, he learns that he may lose a kitchen. Living without a boat is one thing, but living without a kitchen is something different, and he is not yet ready for the ultimate diet...

So, while everyone is screaming and yelling, the demolition crew keeps working. Police presence actually protected them from any of this. I was told that if the Lady's attorney succeeds, they may come in the morning and stop the work, but by the same token, it was not really likely, as they had to have grounds for that beyond "I want it stopped". By the end of the day today I called the contractor and asked him. He said that nobody approached them today with anything, and they were wrapping up the demolition.

They still have some work to do and promised to finish by the midday tomorrow. So, that's the story of a demolition. Ask me about it 2 weeks ago, and I had no clue this was even possible. I must also acknowledge excellent work by Listing agents, and their involvement. They are trying to make the transaction run smoothly, and acted very professionally and resourcefully. I called the listing agent yesterday in the evening to make sure he was OK. I guess his feathers were a bit bangled, but he was OK...

Every time I close the deal, I feel that I am know everything, and there is simply no way there is something unknown. Every time I pat myself on the back... until next deal comes, and then, OMG, what the heck is this? What do I do now?

That's the circle of life in Real Estate

 * Images courtesy of Google Earth and Flickr.com under Creative Commons License

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Ambassador
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Good lord I'm exhausted reading this story.   You will earn whatever commission is coming on this deal and a bottle of champagne to break over the bow of the new boat :-)

Mar 26, 2010 12:10 PM #1
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Cindy - Coping with my complete inability to make even Short Stories short, I found the way around this: I am a fast reader (LOL)

Pretty much same result

And all the laurels should go to the Listing agents, they are the ones who took the punch... I am so far is more of a spectator... well, sort of...

Mar 26, 2010 12:33 PM #2
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Jon, that made my head spin, wow! Clever way of resolving it though. Let's hope that the rest of the deal runs smooth and it closes without more issues!

Mar 26, 2010 01:31 PM #3
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Andrea - I was dreaming at one time of putting together some sort of compendium of issues that we deal with. I thought that it would be great to have them by the areas or at least by the states.

It would be an incredible resource when we deal with those confident Buyers, who are so sure that they know everything.

Stories like this one, when there are issues.  Then we could simply say "look, this is the book (and it would have been a thick book as every agent has something to contribute) of things that HAPPENED. If you wanna be a ginnea pig keep on your own. We will keep a page for you in the chapter for the Buyer on their own".

What a nasty person I am... (LOL)

Mar 26, 2010 01:41 PM #4
Rainmaker
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Maggie Dokic | Miami, FL | 305.81.HOUSE (46873)
eXp Realty LLC - Miami, FL
GREEN, CDPE, SFR, Pinecrest | Palmetto Bay |

Jon, here I am for my daily dose.  I am still laughing at:

He is yet to find out that the happiest day for a man is when he sells his expensive boat.    <---- you are sooo funny!  Really.

This is such a clever way to deal with the situation.  Big Kudos to that listing agent.

And I think your idea for that book is a good one.  Visuals work!

Mar 27, 2010 12:24 AM #5
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Missy Caulk
Missy Caulk TEAM - Ann Arbor, MI
Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate

Jon, that photo tells the story and what a story it is.The interesting thing about being in real estate is all the different situations we deal with.

 

Mar 27, 2010 12:26 AM #6
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
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Maggie - I am glad you find a funny part as I thnk adding some spice to a boring real estate story is a plus.

And then, yes, I am sure he will very soon figure it out, he is not the type of guy who would spend all his time fixing, adding, cleaning, etc.

Mar 27, 2010 03:34 AM #7
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
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Missy - that's true. That's why I am always thinking what a good real estate education could be.

Mar 27, 2010 03:35 AM #8
Rainmaker
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Scott Guay
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services PenFed Realty - Ocean Pines, MD
Associate Broker. Ocean City and Ocean Pines MD

We will aways be learning in our business. In almost every transaction there is a nuance that we have not encountered before.

Mar 27, 2010 03:45 AM #9
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
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Scott - I agree. I think the success in this field only comes to those, who can work in the environment, where thereis a lot of unknown. People, who like everything be laid out on the table, can't take uncertainty, and leave real estate

Mar 27, 2010 03:51 AM #10
Rainmaker
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William J. Archambault, Jr.
The Real Estate Investment Institute - Houston, TX

Jon,

Your guy was doing fine until: "He hears that the property is in foreclosure, the listing agent throws at him that he should not probably pay rent, because of that, and to add to that bouquet of problems, he learns that he may lose a kitchen."

Such interference is often criminal! Even if it's legal in FL, if the tenant stops paying he maybe libel for damages to the landlord!

If he stops paying he may lose his rights under new Federal rules regarding forecloser on rented properties! This is yet to be tested and it seems to violate ever law with regards to title.

If the tenant defaults based on your guys advice he could be libel to the landlord, if the landlord can make a reasonable claim that he might have saved the house except for the tenants default the damages could huge!

There's an old saying "two wrongs don't make a right" it's also true that two as... don't make a attorney or even a comptant agent!

Bill

Mar 27, 2010 02:24 PM #11
Rainmaker
153,944
Kathy Opatka
RE/MAX CROSSROADS - Ocean City, MD
Serving Ocean City, MD, & The Delaware Beaches

OMG!!! What a fiasco! I had to read the blog twice before I got the players correct!  Did it settle yet?

Mar 28, 2010 04:08 AM #12
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
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Bill - Though I was not part of any of that, I agree with you. We discussed it in the office and my guys also were very righteous, and it was my point to them that until closed, the landlord owns it, and you can voluntarily make tenants pay her mortgage. That is what foreclosure is for.

The other thing was that in  my opinion the agent should not have discussed that with tenants, who had no idea the property was in the foreclosure proceedings.

I spoke to the agent today, and he explained to me that during the argument, the Tenant said that he had a lease, and that the tenant was stating that they could stay there according to the terms of the lease. At that point the agent told them that there was a letter from the city Code Engorcement sent to the landlord giving her 30 days to remove the illegal kitchens. And it was sent out March 15. So, knowing that they have paid security, first and last, he suggested that they stop paying and live this last, as their chances to collect from defaulted landlord were not the greatest.

I do not know whether the City Code Enforcement would be following the terms of the lease, and I doubt it.

 

Mar 28, 2010 05:37 AM #13
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Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
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Kathy - the lady whose property is in foreclosure, bought this property at the height of the market for $850K in October 2004. It was a flip, people who sold it to her, bought it for $600,000 in May 2004, only 4 months before. Now the tax assessment value is $398,263.

3 kitchens were there, and, my understanding, is that she thought it was legal, and she did n ot check with the city.

 

Mar 28, 2010 05:46 AM #14
Rainmaker
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Jon Zolsky
FunCoast Realty 386-405-4408 - Ponce Inlet, FL
your Daytona Condo Agent

You can never exhaust all the new situations which come with every transaction. That makes this business thrilling and sometime too thrilling

Apr 01, 2010 11:52 AM #15
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