The joke is that real estate agents should move homes at least once every five years, just so we can feel what our buyers and sellers experience during the moving process. I have moved many times, so I don't usually forget the exhaustion and sea of cardboard that comes along with it. No matter how much I prepare for a move, moving day always brings its own surprises and complications that I couldn't anticipate.
So when I receive a text from one of my sellers that says "Can you call me please? We have an issue" just a few hours before closing, I'm prepared for the worst...and it almost was.
In my sellers' honorable effort to turn over the home to the new buyers in the best possible condition, they made the decision to patch the holes where there were pictures hung, and touch-up the paint on those walls. It's not a requirement of our contracts to do so, but it's very generous of sellers to do that for their buyers.
One of their daughter's bedrooms was painted in lime green. Unfortunately, a few hours before the buyers were ready to do their final walk through before closing, the sellers tripped over the can of lime green paint and it spilled all over the carpet!
Last-minute surprises like spilled paint are more common than you might think, and they add a considerable amount of panic to the closing process. My job, as an agent, is to be the calm in the storm and guide both parties toward a win-win situation.
In this case, the sellers diligently tried to have the carpets cleaned but the lime green paint was too persistent, so they offered to replace the carpet for they buyers.
In a difficult and unexpected situation, it's human nature to be cautious of trusting everyone else involved. I've seen first-hand how distrust can lead to a longer and more expensive closing process. I believe that success comes from building genuine relationships, so I've dedicated my career to fostering those relationships between myself and my clients, as well as other agents. In this case, I was friends with the agent on the other side so I was able to approach him with an alternative solutions.
Although I knew my sellers were very honest, I promised to personally replace the carpet. I followed up on that promise by including an amendment to our contract that we all signed.
In the end, we reached our win-win solution. Our buyers got a brand-new carpet and our sellers closed on time. I believe that trust is the most important element in an enjoyable buying/selling process. That belief is why I work to create a level of trust between myself, my buyers, my sellers and other agents so we all end up winning together.
Make it great!
Better Homes and Gardens