Real Estate Agent with Johnson Real Estate, Inc. RES.0761759

Please don't give my client a heart attack.. she's 88 years young!    This was the thought going through my mind last night when I received a call from the local gas company.

My client is selling her home and is scheduled to close TOMORROW.  Last night on my way to dinner, when I was 40 minutes away from the area, I received a call from the local gas company saying that when the buyer requested us to switch the utility into his name, he mentioned that he smelt gas in the kitchen... 3 weeks ago when he was there for the home inspection.

What the @#@%#???  Why wasn't this brought to our attention when the home inspection was going on?  Why didn't the buyer's agent call me to let me know this?  I was just in this home last week, and smelt NOTHING. 

The dispatcher on the other end of the phone was understanding, but mentioned it was protocol to go out to investigate.  Which I understood.  I called my client who has moved from this location to let her know what was going on.  She was very upset, and didn't understand this at all. "I've lived in the house for over 60 years and never had a problem with the gas".  "I was just in there today with my family, and none of us smelt anything".

As we spoke she was getting more and more agitated.  To put her mind at ease, I told her I would go and check everything out on her behalf, and would also call her son to come with me.  This made her relax some, but I could tell that she was very concerned. 

After we hung up I called her son, only to find out, he too, was not in the area.  We both agreed to turn around and would meet at his mom's home ASAP.  I called back the gas company and found out that they were already on the property, but would be glad to wait.

No sooner did I hang up, (I was now speeding on the highway to get to this home), I received a call back from my client's son.  The neighbor who lives across the street called his mom to let her know that not only was the gas company there, but so was 2 fire trucks, and the lights are going and disturbing the neighborhood. 

middletown fire dept


middletown fire dept

When I heard this I panicked, I thought for sure my client was going to have a heart attack.  I called her back to hear the fluster in her voice.  After a few minutes I was able to calm her down and told her I would call her when I got there and would keep her on the line so she could hear what was going on.

To make a long story short, by the time I got there, the fire dept had left and only the gas company was there.  We went through the home, and there was NO gas leak in the kitchen.  However, there was a *tiny* leak in the gas valve (aquastat) on the water heater in the basement.  They turned off the supply of gas to the heater and recommended we get this fixed.

By the time I left the property, I had 3 plumbers quotes, spoke with my client (and her son) and they decided to go with one of them.  This plumber is going out first thing this morning to change the value.


Obviously it was a good thing that the gas company came out, but did all the hoopla ha have to occur to panic my client?





Info about the author:

Valerie Osterhoudt is a Cromwell Connecticut Residential Realtor who can assist you with the purchase and/or sale of real estate in the Middlesex County of CT, which includes Cromwell, Rocky Hill, Berlin, Middletown, Wethersfield, Newington, as well as all other surrounding areas.  Please visit me at for all your relocation and/or local needs.  

For real estate.. all you need to know, is VALERIEO  

If you're thinking about buying a home in Cromwell CT area, there are plenty of great buys in today's market.  There is no better time than now to take advantage of these homes while interest rates remain at an all time low.  For more information on Cromwell CT real estate's homes and/or condos please visit Johnson Real Estate to access the newest listings. 

Copyright © 2011 - By Valerie Osterhoudt, ABR - All rights reserved...... ***PLEASE DON'T GIVE MY CLIENT A HEART ATTACK... SHE'S 88 YEARS YOUNG!!!***



Posted by


Valerie Osterhoudt, ABR
(Accredited Buyers Representative)

Is a Full Time Realtor® with with Johnson Real Estate, in Cromwell, CT who specializes in Homes and Condos For Sale in the Middlesex and Hartford Counties in CT.


valerie osterhoudt

Valerie Osterhoudt, ABR ~Johnson Real Estate, Inc.
cell:  860.883.8889

email: Valerie Osterhoudt, ABR



Comments (14)

Michelle Francis
Tim Francis Realty LLC - Atlanta, GA
Realtor, Buckhead Atlanta Homes for Sale & Lease


This should NOT happen.  Glad you were so on the ball and in touch with your clients feelings, but really, extra drama that is so ridiculous. 

All the best, Michelle

Apr 14, 2011 01:37 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Michelle... Do you know what I found out last night? That if I were to call the local gas company and told them I smelt gas at a home, while calling from a cell phone as I am sitting in my car in a different town, they would have to investigage, even if I have NO connection to this house. 

Apr 14, 2011 02:19 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Oh girl,  you were speeding?????     You handle it with your client well, but I can see were your client would be upset.  Cannot believe this happen at the eleven hour.  Relax today.

Apr 14, 2011 03:17 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Will.. You know the two sayings..."What can go wrong will", and the other is "For every off day, deserves a day off".

I'm definetly doing the latter one...

Apr 14, 2011 03:26 AM
Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®
RE/MAX Realty Center - Waukesha, WI
Giving Back With Each Home Sold!

WOw...that is alot of commosion so close to handled it splendidly....interesting that the gas leak wasn't found at the home inspection

Apr 14, 2011 03:40 AM
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Red Rock Real Estate - St. George, UT
So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR

Whew! Problem solved and client is fine Valerie thanks to your efforts to calm her. Glad they found the leak...maybe next time they should just send the gas guy to check it out...(?)

Apr 14, 2011 04:01 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Kristin..LOL.  That was my thought too.  How could the home inspector miss this.  Then again, it was the buyers choice on whom to use for this.

Apr 14, 2011 04:02 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Wanda.. The *gas guy* was there and mentioned it was a *gas* value that needed to be replaced.  I asked him if he could do it since he was there, but he mentioned a plumber has to do it.  UGH.  Speaking of passing the buck.

Apr 14, 2011 04:03 AM
Joshua Zargari
MJ Decorators Workshop LI staging and home decorating - Lynbrook, NY
MJ Decorators Workshop

Hi Valerie.

You took the right approach.

Apr 14, 2011 07:39 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Joshua.. Thanks.  It is amazing some times how things go astray in the 9th hour when it comes to real estate.

Apr 14, 2011 07:50 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Valerie, glad that you got this taken care of quickly, but I would be having a talk with that other Realtor to find out why you were not made a ware of this when it was first noticed.  What if there had been a bigger leak? 

Apr 14, 2011 11:54 AM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

George... I knew there wasn't a big leak, b/c when I first went into this home, I mentioned it to them.  They explained that it was the pilot on the stove for the burners.  Which makes sense with the age of the home.  But you are right, why didn't the other realtor mention something...WEEKS ago.  Unless the home inspector never brought it up to her.

Apr 14, 2011 12:58 PM
Karen Bernetti
Southington, CT

I'm sorry Valerie, but your story made me laugh - I'm sure this was very traumatic for you and your client and her family - but those 2 fire trucks, now that is just silly! I hope you're able to look back at this one day and laugh, it really is kind of funny.   

Apr 15, 2011 04:02 PM
Valerie Osterhoudt
Johnson Real Estate, Inc. - Cromwell, CT
ABR, Cromwell, CT Real Estate ~ 860.883.8889

Karen... I'm working on it.. not quiet there yet.  Give me another week or so. :)

Apr 17, 2011 04:21 AM