I met Pam (an alias) at a home listing I was holding open about three years ago in North Scottsdale. Pam liked the home but it wasn’t the one for her. She lived in SoCal and for the next few years she made an annual trek to look at patio homes. Each time she came out there would usually be one home that rose to the top of her interest list, but really she wasn’t quite ready to make the move – until now.

On this recent visit, she found the home! It was very close to a community she loved, it was a great floor plan, was a larger lot than others, and it was within her price range.  The house had been on the market for almost 5 months, though they had a deal on it before but a poor home inspection sank the escrow.  We came in with a lower priced offer, and through a series of counter offers, which took extra time, we agreed verbally on a price.

There are a number of risks in negotiating a home sales transaction that we explain to the buyer as we start to go down this road. With a willing buyer and seller most everything can be negotiated, and most of the time emotions are held in check, but the one thing we can’t control is what sank our deal – and that was another offer. Just before the seller was going to sign our deal another offer came in for more money. The seller accepted the other offer. We lost.

To say that Pam was bummed out was an understatement! After three years, she had finally found the right home and was thrilled she was going to be making this move soon.  I explained to Pam that in my almost 40 years’ experience, there were countless times that when something like this happened, that there was a better home right around the corner. Pam, however, wasn’t really too interested in hearing my sermon right then.

To say that Pam was bummed out was an understatement!  … She wasn’t really too interested in hearing my sermonette right then.

Over the next ten days, communication had pretty much stopped from her end. Calls and e-mails were not being responded to, and I was suspecting the worse – a lost business/friend relationship due to huge disappointment. Well, it wouldn’t be the first time for sure, but my own disappointment was gnawing on me as well.

I’ll be honest, sometimes I don’t think God’s too interested in my lost business deals, or more importantly, I remind myself, my clients loss. But this time, I asked. “Lord, could you actually make this work out for Pam? Either bring this other house back into the picture or bring her another one?” Yes, my faith wasn’t big enough to ask for a better one.

But guess what? A better one came. I got an e-mail from her last Thursday which simply said, “This is it!!!!!!” with a link to a new MLS listing we had automatically set up for her. It was in her favorite gated community, was located on a private golf course viewing huge pine trees and a pond, had a vaulted floorplan, terrific large patio with sunken spa and built in BBQ. She saw the photos online, saw that it was her first choice neighborhood, saw the mapped location and wanted it. But she was now back in California.

How do I get it she asked? This is where adrenaline takes over. I went over to see the house to make sure that it’s everything it seemed to be online. (Actually it was better). While I was there another agent was previewing. I knew this was going to go fast. The home was very well priced even under-valued. I called the listing agent who told me that she was having lots of action on the home and that a cash buyer was contemplating an offer, but she had nothing at that point. I reported to Pam my findings and she gave me a thumbs up on my recommendations.

Long story short we crafted an offer as best we could considering Pam was not a cash buyer. We came in over full price by $2500. We reduced the term of the inspection period to 7 days. We eliminated the appraisal as a condition of the purchase and we tripled the earnest money deposit.  Another came in, also for more than asking price, but it wasn’t cash. Pam’s offer was accepted. The other buyer was bummed.

To say that Pam was ecstatic was an understatement.  The same goes for me.

Mike Bodeen