Some houses take a long time to sell and it is usually because of pricing and/or condition of the house. I listed a property back in March of 2014 and it was a challenging house to sell. The owner had intended to live there after she purchased it and embarked on a huge remodeling project. The inside was totally gutted of all sheet rock, plumbing and even the electrical was stripped out of the house.
Then the unexpected happened and the owner had to move to the East Coast. The remodeling continued with new siding, roof and deck, and the house went back on the market. The unfortunate thing is that if the interior had not been stripped the house would have sold much sooner and for a higher price. One would think that since the septic was in, the exterior shell was there and it had a nice ocean view, someone would snatch it up, but no one did. I originally listed the house for $255,000, which was $25,000 less than the previous broker’s list price.
The first year it was listed there were very few inquiries, but after a few price reductions, a few more want-to-be investors and “flippers” inquired, but the house was beginning to deteriorate. Moss started growing on the roof, the wood deck was starting to rot and the blackberries in the front were now blocking the view.
Every 6 months when it was time to renew it was also time for another price reduction. That generated a few offers from hopeful buyers but all the offers were all subject to sub-contractor’s obtaining bids so the buyer could “fix it and flip it”. The numbers just didn’t pencil out because all the subcontractors involved in the bidding process tacked on their profit. This shell of a house needed someone who would be able to do some sweat equity work and planed to stay there. A new year rolled around and the price was reduced again, and the activity and interest was now brisk.
One potential buyer took a special interest in the property and did the most due diligence and uncovered additional remodel costs the other buyers who made offers never thought of. After a month of negotiations, an agreed upon price was reached and we finally made it to the closing table.
The Bitter Sweet part of this sale is that I had been working with the seller for so long I know I’m going to miss our communications and conversations. Although we have never met our exchanges were always pleasant and I will miss that. I’m happy it sold and that’s sweet! As I was telling this story to the escrow officer at the closing table, she said, “it’s kind of like finishing a good book”.