If At First You Don't Succeed....at least keep the client!

Real Estate Agent with Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395 BRE# 01494165


If At First You Don't Succeed....at least keep

the client!


I love Active Rain Contests and Challenges. We learn so much from each other in the Rain...and from our own reflections as we tell our stories. This morning I found the Contest, "Who Says There Are No Do-Overs?," and it reminded me of a great success story I had. 

This story is one about one of my favorite transactions....two transactions actually. 

I started working with a family to buy a new home and sell their current home. Seems simple enough. They lived in a very popular neighborhood and received an offer the first weekend on the market. The buyer was from overseas and was happy to allow them some time to find the replacement home. We found that home very quickly, it was in the same neighborhood and literally around the corner. 

So far so good!

Fast forward to the closing. We were set to close on Thursday with our buyer and Friday for the new home. All closing documents were signed, all closing conditions met....but things moved slowly. By Friday afternoon, we realized we were moving into the following week to start this process. 

Since the neighbors had already left their home and moved out, they offered to my clients that they could still move in over the weekend and we'd all close on Monday and Tuesday....no problem. 

My clients asked me what I thought. I said normally I'd say "no" but that really everything was already done and I didn't see any red flags....so we could do a simple lease to cover liability, and sure...why not? 

Well of course I should have stuck with "no."

Monday all hell broke loose. The lender who was lending to our overseas buyer was shut down by Fannie Mae. It wasn't our fault, but now we were without a loan. The other 2 lenders in the country who funded these kinds of loans refused to take an application until they understood what was going on.

Both transactions had just died!

I spent the next 2 weeks making sure that my clients were made whole financially. Certainly I couldn't help the emotional stress, but we negotiated from the deposit:

  • All Seller costs
  • Moving costs to and from the replacement home
  • Repairs made during negotiations
  • Termite report and repairs

I frankly worked harder negotiating how to get out of this transaction that I ever did getting us into it. 

Why is this a success story? 

Because a mere 2 weeks later, my clients found another home they wanted to buy. Due to my efforts to help them when the first situation fell apart....they trusted me! Again we found a buyer the first week and closed in 30 days on each.

They have referred me to many of their friends and family! I'm glad they are happy! If at first you don't succeed...well, you know the rest. 


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Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Excellent that you earned their trust and were able to help them with another deal. That must have been a very stressful few weeks for everyone!


Dec 22, 2016 07:37 AM #1
Nick & Trudy Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtors, Philly Main Line

Wow, that is some story, and yes I can bet you worked harder getting out of the first deal than getting into it. Surprised they did not go back to that house when they found another buyer for theirs unless it also had resold quickly but maybe the negotiations had soured them on it.

Dec 22, 2016 07:37 AM #2
Michael Jacobs
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena Area Real Estate 818.516.4393

Good morning, Karen -- you certainly created lemonade from a lemon-like kind of situation.    Often real estate involves some a second(or more) chance.   

Dec 22, 2016 07:54 AM #3
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Karen, that is a success story. People trust when they see us doing the right thing in the face of "lender adversity."  I recently lost a client (referred to be my an AR member) because the lender failed to close on two seperate FHA purchases. We did not realize how inexperienced the lender was with FHA. Client was out of pocket $1,800 on the first failed purchase and $1,650 on the second.  I was carrying the PITA on the second purchase. In the end the lender could not get it done. My willingness to pay for the delays did not make a difference and save the deal. The baby was thrown out with the bath water on that one. That buyer wants nothing to do with me or the lender.

Congratulations to you for doing the right thing and 

Dec 22, 2016 08:29 AM #4
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty & Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

ZOIKS! That's a terrible story but I'm glad you were able to turn it around. That's the mark of a good agent. Thanks for sharing!

Dec 22, 2016 08:38 AM #5
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

It is all about trust.  If a client trusts you they will come back again and again!  I am so glad it worked out for you.

Dec 22, 2016 12:30 PM #6
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Perseverance, knowledge and persistence are keys to success and this case keeping the client'

Dec 22, 2016 07:57 PM #7
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good Morning Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner - that is one of those real horror stories that you can't imagine turning out ok.  Congratulations on a turn around do over and an even better situation.

Dec 23, 2016 06:24 AM #8
Noel Mayer

Being reactive,persistent and  moving forward ruled the day Congratulation on gaining their trust and relieving their stress from the original transaction which opened the door for New Clients

Dec 25, 2016 05:33 AM #9
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

You certainly earned both deals and the trust from long term clients! I winced at buy a new home and sell their home.... that is a dance that some times doesnt jive well!

Dec 28, 2016 10:37 PM #10
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Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner

Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395
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