Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Real estate woes

Just got off a somewhat-heated conversation with my Foxtons agent. You see, we've been playing phone tag for a few weeks now. They went out of business last September and we've been very patient with them. They've only got 30 employees now dealing with the 4000+ listings that they're still holding on to and I can just imagine their volume of work.
However, being sympathetic to this company's troubles does not change the fact that I still need to sell my home. The phone-tag thing where I call them and get the voice mailbox and I get a call back and they get my voicemail is getting tiresome. It didn't use to be like this when we were starting out.

Since they "closed down" last September, I've also gotten 3 appointments setup for buyers to come in for a look. None ever showed up. I did, however, get a few calls from other realtors who claim that they could not show my home to their clients because they couldn't get an appointment set up.

The proverbial straw-that-broke-the-camel's-back came in the form of another realtor who dropped by last night. Again, she told me the same song and dance number about not being able to reach foxtons but thought she'd chance it and drop by anyway. With this, hubby and I decided to just call it quits and try to get out of our contract.
This morning, after a short game of phone-tag, I finally got through to an agent. I explained to her how I've been getting calls and visits from realtors who claim that they have not been able to get through to foxtons and her mood changed. She got all defensive and started raising her voice and told me what she thought I was trying to do. According to her, I was trying to turn things around and shift the blame on foxtons. They've gotten me 6 EXCELLENT offers since we got listed with them and I've refused every single one... so I can't go on blaming foxtons for the situation. It was my fault.

Huh ?

I corrected her. 3. We got 3 offers, all with prices lower than the price of the one bedroom that got sold recently - and I have a 2 bedroom. And MIND YOU, these offers were all from people who were putting 0 downpayment. 2 out of the 3 offers even had concessions - that means that the price they're offering for my house isn't the bottom line, they still need to get some $$$ out of that to pay for closing costs - and they blame me for not accepting those offers ???
So I'm not trying to put the blame on Foxtons and they shouldn't try and put the blame on me. What I am doing is stating facts. That's what these realtors (who have dropped by) have told me and I believe them, why wouldn't I ? I've been having a hard time getting in touch with Foxtons too.

Bottomline, I was told that the judge has signed the approval papers for their sale of our listings. There was no way for me to get out of the contract and for now, it's a waiting game. Our listing has been transferred to Maplewood (?) and Century 21. I googled this and found an article that says that sellers are allowed to opt out of these contracts but cannot list their houses with other agents until the date on the contract passes. Given then, it's probably better to just stay with the new realtor handling our account and hope for the best.
Hopefully, I get someone more courteous this time. I don't blame the lady I talked to for being borderline-rude. I'm upset and I'm sure she's upset too. After all, I'm sure she's been getting a lot of flack from other sellers too - not to mention the fact that her job may not be too secure right now.

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