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Old 04-09-2009, 07:11 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,985,208 times
Reputation: 15649

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Quote:
Originally Posted by paintdog52 View Post
Hi everyone! Awhile ago I posted that I would go and look around the the PNW for a home. I did fly out and found that special place and with all the gumption I could muster I told the realtor that I had been in contact with for the last 6 months that I wanted to put in an offer after seeing it. I was so excited as I had finally got the nerve to follow through and had decided to "go for it". I was shuffled off to another realtor to handle the sale. Unbeknownst to me and the new RE representative, the house had been put under contract the evening before by my original realtor. Reflecting back I feel like a fool that I went and looked at the home a second time with the original sales agent and even measured for my washer and dryer to fit in properly. Everyone knew that there was a contract except me. I was just being used for insurance. I'm having a hard time with the humiliation of being treated so poorly. Seems kinda cruel, not to mention unethical to do a person this way. Anyway, I know this is a rant and maybe this is for the best. Thanks for letting me
If your agent is acting as a "buyer's agent," it was completely unethical for her/him not to tell you the house was under contract! As a buyer's agent, s/he is representing YOU, not the seller (though some agents call themselves both buyer's and seller's agents....and you have to wonder sometimes...) But in any case, if it were me I would place a complaint to the agency. This is so SLEEZY.

To protect ourselves from this kind of thing, we should do our homework before we see a property. Before taking the trouble to see a place, call the listing agent and ask specifically if it's under contract. If you really like the description of the place (a perfect fit!) maybe see it anyway and keep the listing sheet in a notebook, checking back several weeks later to see if the financing fell thru, etc. It's always a temptation to cross out a place just because it's under contract. Just because it's under contract doesn't mean done deal.

I'm so sorry this happened to you. On my end, I just withdrew my offer on a perfect house b/c the seller wanted to me to remove the clause that stated my offer is contingent on selling my house. I can't risk getting into a legal obligation to buy when I don't have the cash from the sale of my house...so now, it's very clear to me that I have to sell first I have to have the cash in hand, and that doesn't happen till the closing date...then when I hand over the keys, it's not likely that the closing on a new house would be right away...so I have to rent for a period...moving all my household stuff and pets to temp housing! This has me awake nights worrying about how the heck I'm going to make all this work! Can I imagine trying to do all this any older than I am now??? NOPE. So I'm plowing (ploughing?) ahead, showing the house, with no idea what to do if I should get an offer and the buyer wants a quick closing. All the more reason that I have to get rid of all the s*** in the basement and attic and downsize the heavy furniture NOW...Yikes, I've got to get moving....

 
Old 04-09-2009, 07:34 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,625 posts, read 39,986,663 times
Reputation: 23780
Quote:
Originally Posted by paintdog52 View Post
Hi everyone! ... Unbeknownst to me and the new RE representative, the house had been put under contract the evening before by my original realtor. Reflecting back I feel like a fool that I went and looked at the home a second time with the original sales agent ...
Sorry to hear of this, and the effort you put into it. One of the many reasons I avoid RE agents like the plague. (I am on property #22 w/ only 3 being transacted by realtors, and each of those I refused to allow the agent to be present at closing, salivating over their commission check). This agent should have kept you in the loop, tho was not obligated to do so. Are you in a 'Back-up' position? Lots of stuff happens during the process that could cause the potential buyer to flee. I would follow the sales data to verify that the sale was not for less than your offer (potentially indicating an 'inside-job') or if you are putting this behind you, it might be healthier to walk away. I would have a follow-up conversation with RE #1 just to get their side of the story, and to assure a level of accountability for them. (to give them cause to consider their impact NEXT time they do such a thing.) The RE folks just chase commission $, so if they feel they have a sure thing, they will 'book-it' ASAP. Granted they do 'waste' alot of time with non-purchasers, BUT that is part of their compensation which is far greater than my $350/ hr lawyer. (I say that having paid or provided purchases generating over $80k in commissions last yr, for maybe 20 hrs worth of work)

Do keep us posted on your chosen destination. I like to keep good places in mind, as I have to bail out of my own $30/day PNW property tax burden.

Good luck, make a list of specific MUSTS (be very realistic) and use that as well as give it to future realtors. Avoid even entertaining properties that they drag to you that don't meet your criteria. It will save each of you a lot of time.
A good one will have you on a weekly email update with new props and price changes. You can do similar with mls online and loopnet (which I use for commercial props).

Quote:
MMhere: I'm partial to the area north of Seattle or to Whidby Island, but I also like what I see around Port Townsend. Do tell where you will be located!
Do check into Poulsbo and Camano Island, folks seem to like those spots, and they are far more convenient (which can be a +/-)
 
Old 04-09-2009, 08:35 AM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,086,141 times
Reputation: 924
Quote:
Originally Posted by janb View Post
Do check into Poulsbo and Camano Island, folks seem to like those spots, and they are far more convenient (which can be a +/-)
Anything on the Olympic Peninsula is not that convenient to Seattle (you have to take ferrys to get to Seattle--fun but time consuming.) Poulsbo is definitely closer than Port Townsend. I really liked Port Townsend and if I were to move back and didn't have to work, I'd look up there because there is less rain. Love the feeling of that town--right on the water. I love Olympia but the rain in the winter! more than Seattle. If I didnt' mind rain, I would live in Olympia.
 
Old 04-09-2009, 08:37 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,985,208 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by janb View Post
I would follow the sales data to verify that the sale was not for less than your offer (potentially indicating an 'inside-job')

I like to keep good places in mind, as I have to bail out of my own $30/day PNW property tax burden.
JanB,
I don't understand what you mean by the "inside job" thing...if the first offer on the house was accepted by the owner, s/he wouldn't have known that Paintdog's offer was coming in right after that...??

What else should we watch out for in terms of "inside jobs?" (I'm rather naive.)

Your second comment, above....are you really paying $10 grand-plus per year on prop taxes? It's unbelievable! That's likely to be my way more than my entire SS for one year!
 
Old 04-09-2009, 08:45 AM
 
1,569 posts, read 3,086,141 times
Reputation: 924
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
it's not likely that the closing on a new house would be right away...so I have to rent for a period...moving all my household stuff and pets to temp housing! This has me awake nights worrying about how the heck I'm going to make all this work!
If you are going to have someone move your stuff, look at getting those pods. They deliver them to your place, you pack them, and then you can have them put in storage until you need them. While you're looking for housing, look for a temp room to rent and keep your stuff in storage. It's one solution to packing/unpacking things twice. You might be able to get them ahead of time and slowly pack them as you clean out the house.

My rule since living alone is to only have furniture I can push around myself. I can't move it into a truck alone but I don't need help arranging it. I also have a house with one floor--no basement, attic. I can push it anywhere in the house If I can manage to hold onto the house,it's perfect for growing old in. Like mmhere said, it's not going to get better. My problem is bad eyesight--but that's not from age--I have a lazy eye and it wacks out my depth perception. I've tripped on steps that looked flat to me. I'm glad to be in a house with no steps.
 
Old 04-09-2009, 08:53 AM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,054,907 times
Reputation: 2141
Always remember that a RE agent is working for the seller. There is no such thing as a buyers/sellers agent (that's red marker for scam!). By law, if they are working for the seller, they are obligated to represent the seller's interests. The only buyer's agent is one you pay a fee to and who does not represent the seller at all - and this needs to be covered in that state's laws or they are really working for the seller.

In some states that kind of duplicity is legal; in others it is illegal. I don't what the laws are up there (but I should find out as I have my eye on that area in the future).

And never get too worked up over losing a house. In this market, there are a LOT of houses for sale and not that many buyers. Another one even better will come up with a better seller.

Janb: How do you avoid a seller's RE agent? The seller has a contract.

NEGirl: Oh well. That seller was being unreasonable and may find out the hard way that your offer was better than any one else's. Usually, a contingent offer is taken with a caveat that an uncontingent offer can invalidate the contingent offer if the 1st buyer can't do better. That way, the seller isn't locked in waiting for another property to sell but the buyer is protected from having to come up with money she doesn't have until the house sells. It is a gamble, but one that usually works out to both party's benefit.

My plan on relocating is to sell 1st and be homeless for a while. I did this before when I sold the marital house. I put all my stuff into a storage rental except for the very basics to live with. A friend invited me and my dog to stay with her family and I paid for all her food in exchange + babysitting and cleaning to lighten my load. If that hadn't come up, I would have rented a cheap apartment. It took me 6 months before I found a property I wanted and I made 2-3 offers that didn't make it before that.

When I do it for my retirement relo, I will have to figure out whether to move and store or store here and move when I get another house. That may depend on how the market is and when this house sells. If it takes a long time, I may move and wait for a sale. If it goes before I ready, then I'll sell and move later. Either way, this time, I want to have the cash in hand to buy outright when I do it.

Just keep your eyes on the end result you are looking for. Another house will come up and you may like it better or it will be a better fit. The more you look, the more you get to see what you like and don't. (That criteria list is an excellent idea - but it might change as you look at properties.)

For both of you: It will work out in the end.

Yes, I'm all about having contingency plans.
 
Old 04-09-2009, 09:54 AM
Status: "Could be worse" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
510 posts, read 1,309,688 times
Reputation: 452
Default Progress in Action!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paintdog52 View Post
Hi everyone! Awhile ago I posted that I would go and look around the the PNW for a home. I did fly out and found that special place and with all the gumption I could muster I told the realtor that I had been in contact with for the last 6 months that I wanted to put in an offer after seeing it. I was so excited as I had finally got the nerve to follow through and had decided to "go for it". I was shuffled off to another realtor to handle the sale. Unbeknownst to me and the new RE representative, the house had been put under contract the evening before by my original realtor. Reflecting back I feel like a fool that I went and looked at the home a second time with the original sales agent and even measured for my washer and dryer to fit in properly. Everyone knew that there was a contract except me. I was just being used for insurance. I'm having a hard time with the humiliation of being treated so poorly. Seems kinda cruel, not to mention unethical to do a person this way. Anyway, I know this is a rant and maybe this is for the best. Thanks for letting me
Hey Good for you, Paint!! It may not have worked out, but you took a BIG step forward taking the initiative to spend money to fly toward what you want, without any guarantee it would work out... You know what they call that, in addition to gumption? Courage! and Determination to create the future you want, instead of just accepting whatever happens! High Five!
Mistakes will be made, unethical A-holes abound, stupid people are pretty abundant too, as well as a few who really don't care what happens to you, --if you want advice on that stuff, I'm probably an expert. I've met them all!
Keep plugging along, you're already doing what it takes to guarantee you'll eventually find it!
 
Old 04-09-2009, 10:31 AM
Status: "Could be worse" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico
510 posts, read 1,309,688 times
Reputation: 452
Default Customer Service???

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmhere View Post
Haven't had a lot of time to deal with this because my Medicare Part D medication coverage decided to drop my main medication from it's formulary!! Guess what? Insurance companies CAN change the formulary any time they want. I picked this particular plan because I got the best deal for my medications. Open enrollment was Nov. 15 through Dec. 31. They changed the formulary in January.

I'm VERY ticked off that the insurance company can drop meds any time so I can't depend on open enrollment information to evaluate and chose a health plan each year.

So I've been in anxiety mode and trying to work out an exception to the formulary. I'm not sure why it is, but when things go wrong with my medications, I become a blithering idiot! It's like walking away and forgetting your purse! I'm able to be calm and take care of many other things that stress most people out, but not with medications!

I HATE getting older and having to deal with all that it brings!
Ok mmhere, here's a little comedic relief! The 'corporate power' seems to grant them the right to do anything they want, while we have to do exactly what they want, getting penalized if we don't. It's long been an issue with me, especially now when the AIG bonuses are being flaunted.
Anyway, there was a fun little thread awhile back:

"About useless instructions for things that arent supposed to need instructions"
Someone asked:
"Can anyone tell me why my cell phone manual is 200 plus pages long, what's to know??"


My response:
Oh that's easy!
19 pages detailing why they're not responsible for claims made when you signed the contract, 18 pages on # of ways you can be blamed for non-compliance,7 pages on # of ways they will make your life hell, 2 chapters of CAPITALIZED PARAGRAPHS STATING THEY CAN CHANGE THE TERMS FOR ANY REASON, and THAT THEY CAN NEVER BE SUED, 4 pages that state that you MUST purchase one of THEIR phones, *but* that the phone you purchase is NOT THEIR responsibility, that the phone has NOTHING to do with the service (and vice versa), that any and all problems you have are YOURS TO KEEP, 8 pages of customer service numbers that will NOT resolve ANY problems, 10 pages that WILL create NEW problems, 12 pages on how anything you do or say will be misquoted and used against you, 5 pages of how your information will be shared with state and local governments, law enforcement without restriction, and every employee in every department of every company they can think of --to ensure you will be continuously monitored, profiled, and bombarded with sales calls, junk mail, offers for credit cards, loans, viagra, timeshares, etc. as long as you live, and...
1 sentence thanking you for your business.

*The other 100 pages are in Spanish.
 
Old 04-09-2009, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,985,208 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dancingearth View Post
If you are going to have someone move your stuff, look at getting those pods. They deliver them to your place, you pack them, and then you can have them put in storage until you need them. While you're looking for housing, look for a temp room to rent and keep your stuff in storage. It's one solution to packing/unpacking things twice. You might be able to get them ahead of time and slowly pack them as you clean out the house.
Wow, great idea on the pod! Will look into it today! Could save money in the long run, but at least a lot in the moving process. Thanks!
 
Old 04-09-2009, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Sacramento, CA, USA
84 posts, read 191,449 times
Reputation: 52
Default Senior cohousing concept

The following info is from a press release I thought many of you might find interesting. As with regular cohousing to date, senior cohousing is priced out of my range. However, I do like the concept behind it and would hope to live in some iteration of the concept within my price range.
________________________________
Book Release Announcement: Senior Cohousing Handbook By Charles Durrett
New Society Publishers Second Edition of Charles Durrett’s Senior Cohousing Handbook meets the demand for sustainable housing options as baby boomers come of age.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PRLog (Press Release) – Apr 01, 2009 – Book Release Announcement
Senior Cohousing Handbook
By Charles Durrett
Release Date:
May 2009

Excerpt
Currently, seniors represent a record 12.4 percent of the American population, which, with the swell of post-WWII baby boomers entering seniorhood, will increase to 20 percent by the year 2030. Clearly, action must be taken, and quickly, to correct these household and community shortcomings. But what can be done, and by whom? How can we better house ourselves as we age? I believe that the answer lies in senior cohousing communities.

Having visited many of these communities, I’m now a firm believer that 20 seniors stranded on a desert island would do better at taking care of most of their basic needs than the same 20 left isolated or in an institution. — Charles Durrett, from Senior Cohousing Handbook

Advance Praise for Charles Durrett’s Senior Cohousing Handbook
This book is about building community — community and small scale problem solving. It is about seniors reaching their potential in healthy communities — communities where seniors are not cast adrift to fend for themselves. This book makes it possible for seniors to get together and make a neighborhood for themselves that makes perfect sense to them.— Eric Utne, co-founder of the Utne Reader

Dive right into this book and be enriched by the insights and the wisdom you will find there. I’m not kidding. Go. Now. Your future is waiting for you. — Bill Thomas, MD, from the Prologue

Charles Durrett has written a book inviting an exciting eldership.…Wouldn’t it be great if every step of life had such thoughtful design?— Patch Adams, MD, from the Foreword

About the Book
No matter how rich life is in youth and middle age, the elder years can bring on increasing isolation and loneliness as social connections lessen, especially if friends and family members move away.

New Society Publishers Second Edition of Charles Durrett’s Senior Cohousing Handbook and interest is high as new issues around greening, sustainable housing and affordable living are very much in our awareness.

Senior cohousing is ready for the fast growing baby-boomer demographic -- healthy, educated and proactive adults who want to live in a social and environmentally vibrant community.

This comprehensive Senior Cohousing guide to joining or creating a cohousing project, is written by the Charles Durrett, who coined the term, introduced the idea to the U.S. and is currently the U.S. leader in the field as an architect and consultant.

Author Biography
Charles Durrett is the author of three books, including CoHousing: A Contemporary Approach To Housing Ourselves (with Kathryn McCamant). A leading cohousing architect, he has won
numerous awards, including the United Nations World Habitat Award and the Best of 50+ Housing Award (National Home Builders Assoc. 2008). Durrett is credited with coining the term ‘cohousing’ and together with wife and professional partner,
Kathryn McCamant, introduced cohousing projects to America.
See Awards here: The Cohousing Company - Architectural Awards

Learn more about McCamant & Durrett Architects by visiting:
Cohousing

New Edition
Senior Cohousing Handbook
By Charles Durrett

Pre-order by visiting:
New Society Publishers - Senior Cohousing Handbook -- 2nd Edition

# # #

McCamant & Durrett Architects is an architecture and consulting firm with offices in Berkeley and Nevada City, California. Since 1987, the firm has provided complete architectural services for a wide range of clients.

Founded by architects Kathryn McCamant and Charles Durrett, the firm is well known internationally for the design of cohousing communities. We also have extensive experience designing senior communities, childcare facilities, pedestrian-friendly town planning and mixed-use projects, affordable housing, and a range of other projects. We believe that the fundamental blending of art, physical and social science, and architecture is achieved with formal knowledge, experience, critical thinking, and critical judgment and experience. Our practice reflects our strong values for community, cooperation, and sustainability.
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