Now I am back from running essential errands (read the start of pre-holiday grooming), I can update a little about what the last few months have held for us. Obviously, talking about it on social media whilst a marketing campaign was on would not have been ideal.
We decided in early June this year to endeavour to sell our home even though it wasn't needed to sell until later in the year. I had struck up a working relationship with a local real estate agent who was relatively new to the area (waves to him as he is an avid follower of this blog!). Dion was pulling in great sales results especially in the street where we are building. Dion earned his right to come and look at our current home even though Brad had already decided which agent we would be using to sell. Dion loved our home and was convinced he had a buyer for our property. Now, I know this can be a good ol' marketing ploy....but we believed him and still do! Fast forward the part about decluttering, minor handyman work, very time consuming & stressful. Dion brings the couple over who seem to love the house BUT thought the fabulous deck would mean too much maintenance as they approach the latter stages of life. We then only signed up with Dion for a week or 2 until he went overseas. On his first open, he received an offer or two but they weren't in the ball park at that early stage. Quite a few private inspections later, a dejected Dion leaves for a month overseas.
Keen to keep the ball rolling with sign up with Amy from LJHooker for 6 weeks.After a week or 2, we decide it is time to start online marketing. This was initially resisted as most houses were selling on the first open house or shortly thereafter. Lots of interest though there was always a BUT. There is no lawn, need more privacy, don't want a private access road, there is no lawn, the pool is too shady, there is too much bush around, we need grass, not open plan enough etc.
At this stage, I am well & truly over the constant need to have an immaculate house in show condition, always 30 minutes away from an inspection. Why won't anyone just put in an offer? The price expectation was in line with what 3 local agents told us we could get. The slap in the face was that most of the other homes in our area were selling prior to the first open or on the first open! Again fast forward and we sign LJHooker up for another 6 weeks until the end of September. Towards the end of August, we decide to drop the advertised price by $20K to get more buyers through and hopefully create a bidding frenzy. Hoorah! We got more buyers through the door but we seemed to get people who were at the very upper limit of their purchasing ability. We resigned ourselves to the fact that the figure we were expecting was totally out of our reach.
We had a lovely Korean couple negotiated with us and we accepted their offer with an earlier settlement. Elated! Until the pest & building inspection occurs. They engage the services of their inspector who speaks there native tongue. He takes one look at a dead tree outside our kitchen door and tells them it is termite damaged. He also tells this young couple that the area I though was some woodrot on fascia was also termite activity. Well, those buyers ran to the hills leaving us with their 0.25% deposit. We cancel the next open and Amy quickly organises her builder to look & rectify. At first look he thinks it is termites too but won't know for sure until he starts pulling it apart. The end result after 3 fast & furious days of building was that there was no termites at all confirmed by a full pest inspection but woodrot caused by some cracked roof tiles. The eaves, fascia, tiles and some beams were all replaced to look brand new. Not money we really wanted to spend but it would have been picked up at any future building inspections anyway.
On the last day of the building works, a buyer was very keen to privately inspect the property before the scheduled open the next day. Think scaffolding, woodchips, painter, roof tiler, builder, rubbish.... He loved the home and later that day put in an acceptable offer though acceptance was subject to seeing what occurred at the the open house. This party were very keen, hanging around at the open house to see if 'it was theirs'! The contracts were exchanged that afternoon with cooling off to finish Friday 5pm. Bank valuation DONE, building inspection DONE. At 3pm on Friday I get a call asking for a one day extension as approval not through yet. Granted by us. A call at 3:30pm from agent and our solicitor says YES the bank approval is in. He is on the way to ANZ bank to transfer money to trust account. We believe it sold. Call at 5:30pm from the agent saying that the buyer called at 5:13pm saying that he received a call from the bank at 4:55pm to say that the insurer won't tick the mortgage insurance box yet as the valuer sees an issue with the height of our downstairs rumpus room (not standard and in fact, not approved by council many years ago) The purchaser is actually in breach of contract & legally needs to pay us the deposit but if we go too hard in following up, it may mean we get a rectification notice from council to return the rumpus room to the double garage.
Whilst I am on the phone to the solicitor, the purchaser turns up at our house unannounced (!!!) basically crying to plead his case. Not at all the right thing to do but at least we do know his intentions first hand so it put our minds at rest. He desperately wants the house and we want to sell it to him. Of course, his solicitor walks off the job at 5:30pm and no-one has contact numbers after hours for her. My solicitor works on it until 8pm until she can go no further with it. The purchaser needed to sign a clause that night but obviously can't as he couldn't reach his solicitor.
It was a waiting game until Monday now to see if his mortgage insurers will approve their part of the loan or to find another way forward. If not, we were back to square ONE. The purchaser left a cheque for the balance of the deposit under the door of the real estate agent on Saturday night. No-one really knows why given he was already in breach of contract. Early yesterday morning, he & his solicitor agreed to the added clause that we would extend cooling off to 5pm that day provided they 'acknowledge that they are aware that the ceiling height of the garage rumpus conversion may not comply with the Council regulations and agree that they will not make application to the council for a building certificate nor will they raise any requisition, objection or claim for compensation nor seek to rescind this contract in this regard' A call at 3:30pm from our solicitor informed us that the purchaser has VERBAL full unconditional approval from the bank but needs some extra time until the written approval is released. Our parties had a few questions to have answered before that extra time was granted, like has the mortgage insurance really been resolved? In the meantime, the purchaser called Brad to congratulate him on selling his house LOL. Brad was clear in saying that until the written evidence was there, we would not be celebrating given Friday's circumstances.
And here we are....SOLD! Much as the building with Eden Brae has had it's ups & downs, I would build again 5 times over before I sold this house again. Time to party....in Fiji!
If you are local and need a good builder, can I recommend Rick Altavilla from Lightscape Building? Rick made himself immediately available to assess and then move heaven & earth to complete the works in record time so we didn't miss another open house. His work is quality and he seems the nicest guy too. Great communication, professional, honest. What more can you ask for in a builder? 0414 657351
And some photos of the deck that was meant to SELL this house ever so quickly....
- I am a SAHM who does work from home occasionally, dedicated to raising 3 Godly, independent, healthy children. Loving the home building process though it is not without challenges. I have fairly free reign over the creative aspect of the project...just not the financial side!