My final sale of 2006 was a lovely family that was moving from out of state and into Virginia. They had been hosed by the Realtor who sold their home. A really sad situation in which they very likely could have taken action citing several ethics violations. Long story short, I gained their trust and got them the house of their dreams at $50,000 below list price...something I never thought would fly. It was the lowest price that the particular community had seen. I was admired by buyers agents, and hated by listing agents in the community.
Fast forward six months. To my surprise, this family, who wrote me a rave review for my "Brag Book"" and kept in touch with me a couple times a month, called me to see what the market value of their home would be. The market had declined steadily since and was on the brink of a bigger drop.
I went in, chatted with them about neighborhood comps, and was confronted with an ugly situation. If their home wasn't worth what they paid, WHY DID I SELL IT TO THEM. It was a rather uncomfortable situation as the wife yelled at me and the husband questioned my expertise. Unfortunately, there were also the last of my 100% financed buyers. So they were underwater just by virtue of the falling market.
The husband threw out comps at me that I had not uncovered. HUGE numbers. I went home, did the research, and realized these were comps from the year BEFORE they even bought the house. 2005 numbers for a 2007 market. I politely explained that in the decline we were seeing, it would be hard to go back 90 DAYS for comps...forget 2005!!!
Sadly, I ended up being the evil person that "sold them an overpriced house", and they hired aa agent that took their overpriced listing and started to whittle away at it bit by bit, costing them THOUSANDS in the process.
It's sad to see, especially for a family I really enjoyed helping, but they are the slow track to a very sad ending. And the one comp I had pulled for their house, which they could not believe, had also been listed this way. Overpriced to start and chased the market down, down, down.
I hate that this family sees me this way. And it made me question why I had gotten into real esate at all. But, despite the turn of events with this family,and other angry sellers I interview with, I love my job. Sometimes, it is just necessary for people to throw the blame somewhere rather than accept the market and move on. Unfortunatlely, we REALTORS have a huge target on our backs for those looking to blame.
Remember, you don't abuse your doctors when they tell you the cure for an illness. You don't abuse your lawyer who is trying to save you thousands in a lawsuit. WHY ABUSE YOUR REALTOR? We are there to give you the best possible advice about the largest investment most families will ever make.