Re: do i just have cold feet? PLEASE HELP ASAP!! long - Posted by JPiper
Posted by JPiper on August 27, 1999 at 10:04:42:
There’s an old saying in real estate “All buyers are liars”. A number of years ago a lender and I were laughing about this one?.and modified the saying to “all buyers are liars?.and sellers too.”
Now maybe that’s a little cynical?.and really there’s no reason to ASSUME any particular person is lying or not lying. Really whether someone is telling the truth (other than you of course) is completely irrelevant to the transaction. If truth were the standard, then we would have to wheel a portable lie detector machine out in the morning so that we could evaluate the statements of all our buyers and sellers.
Instead, we ASSUME nothing. Instead, we do DUE DILIGENCE. We make every effort to uncover all the important details about a deal. So in the course of doing a deal we don’t rely on someone else’s statements regarding value?..we check out the comps on our own. We don’t rely on their statements concerning liens or ability to transfer good title?.we have the title company check the title, and give the conditions under which they will issue title insurance. We don’t rely on disclosure’s or seller statements regarding the condition of the property. We evaluate the condition for ourselves?.paying careful attention to the areas that would be expensive to repair?.like perhaps the foundation, the roof, etc.
The next thing is that you don’t make agreements without thinking through the consequences. Agreements that allow people to occupy before they have closed are mostly a mistake for a lot of reasons. Agreements that allow the seller to remain in the house after closing are a mistake as well. Never say never?there may be a situation where one of these would be appropriate?.but you should resist this like the plague.
Here’s what you trust: You trust your ability to do a competent evaluation of the details of a deal. Whether the seller is honest? I’d love to be dealing with honest people all the time?.but unfortunately that doesn’t jive with reality. People lie, distort, exaggerate?..all of which is geared toward throwing you off your mission?..determining the true nature of the deal.
Understand something. YOU have no agreement with the Realtor. IF an agreement exists it exists between the Realtor and the Seller. Any commission that may be due will be due by the Seller?and will be due from the proceeds of the sale (if the Realtor discovers this). Later the Realtor can sue the Seller for the commission?.and may well do this if they haven’t released the property from the listing agreement or excluded your name from the listing. Just make sure that you are doing nothing that could be construed as tortious interference with a contract. In my state, some brokers can record a mechanics lien against a property for certain kinds of commissions?..but generally not residential deals. That’s something to check though in your state.
In terms of the listing agreement I would have a document signed by the seller, in which he represents that he has spoken to the realtor, and that the realtor has excluded your name from the listing. I would add that the seller agrees to be responsible for any future commission arising from your transaction. Get something down on paper.
I would factor into my equation the possibility that if you don’t agree to permit the seller to stay in the property, that it’s possible he may refuse to leave?.that you may need to evict. No big deal?.another hurdle. He may also balk at closing?.so may sure your paperwork is in order?.and that you are complying with the contract.
Finally, I don’t generally confront people like this with the fact that I know they are not telling the truth. The reason is that it’s to your advantage to know this guy is a liar?..but he doesn’t know you know. Once he knows you know?..that will change the way he responds to things?.and he will become less predictable. At least this way you know he lies?and therefore he’s predictable and you know what to do?.check every statement out.
Good luck with the deal.