I’m a firm believer in the old adage, “what is meant to be, will be” and in the case of our Ugly Duckling, it was definitely meant to be. I highlight this because if you had spent any time in our heads during the four weeks of negotiations with the seller, you would have thought to yourself, “RUN! Don’t walk. RUN!”
The short version of the story is that the seller has DPD or Difficult Personality Disorder (a term coined by my father that will likely live on for many years to come!). I’ll preface the long version of the story by clarifying that this isn’t Patrick’s or my first time at this house selling/buying rodeo. This is actually house #3 for each of us. So we know what to expect….at least we thought we knew what to expect.
The long version of the story goes something like this….
We make an offer.
We negotiate the final sale price with the seller via our realtor.
We do the home inspection.
We submit an addendum to the inspection.
We wait. And wait. And wait.
Seller finally replies with an addendum that is….bizarre. Bizarre wording, bizarre offer to do more than we asked, bizarre bizarre bizarre.
We ask for some clarification to his wording.
He suggests we meet at the house to go over everything (at which point my spidey senses are on alert – this transaction should be cordial but shouldn’t be personal or friendly…..and meeting at the house to discuss the addendum made it personal).
We meet at the house and from the handshake I know something is up.
Patrick and he go out to the garage to start discussing the addendum.
Our realtor and I are two minutes behind them and walk into a tense exchange.
What proceeds next is the seller suggesting that he should leave, our realtor then spending an hour talking him off the ledge and us spending an hour not sure if we’re actually going to get this house or not. Our realtor succeeds in bringing him off the ledge, but we’re still not sure where things will land.
I then call a friend who is good friends with the seller and ask if he’d be willing to talk to his friend and tell him that we’re good people, that we really want the house and that we’re sorry that things got off on the wrong foot. He agrees and this makes a world of difference. He is now forever known as “The House Whisperer.”
We spend the next two weeks doing a lot of CYA shipping legal docs over to make sure that we don’t lose the house. He ends up offering to pay for some of the work to be done on the house in advance of settlement. He ends up being mostly decent about things.
Most importantly, he ends up selling us the house. But when I tell you that this transaction will go down in the history books as “the worst house purchase EVER,” it’s no exaggeration. There was more than one occasion where we thought we were going to be starting our search from scratch. But we made it to the finish line…..or in the case of the Ugly Duckling, we made it to the starting line.
So the biggest disclaimer to this blog is that we weren’t really good at taking photos at critical moments. It’s a bit strange to be in the middle of the chaos of moving and say “WAIT! We need to photograph this for our blog!” So forgive us if we’re not exactly pros at this yet. That said, the before photos of Duckling are somewhat sparse. But these should give you a sense of what we saw when we looked at the house for the first time (and why we had to have a TON of vision to see beyond the ugly).