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A Home for the Holidays, or How Home Buying Can Almost Break Your Heart

By in Buyers with 0 Comments

home-giftYes, that is perhaps the cheesiest blog post title ever written, but it’s true in this case, so it’s fitting for this story.

Back in August, I was contacted by a woman named Maria.  Maria and her dad wanted to buy a house.  I asked her what she was looking for, put her in touch with one of my trusted lenders to make sure she was able to buy a house, and off we went.  In September, they found what they were looking for, made an offer, it was accepted and we started proceeding toward closing.

Maria did everything right;  she got paperwork in to the lender when she needed to,  contacted an insurance agent to obtain a homeowner’s policy, saved her money and didn’t make any crazy purchases while we were in escrow, and quickly signed any addenda I needed her to sign during the process.   She was ecstatic every time I saw her or spoke with her.  She LOVED this house!

November 7th, closing day, arrived. I texted Maria, because she was in class that morning, and asked her when she and her dad would be free to sign.  She said around noon.  I thought that was odd because her dad had never been available during the day before, he was at work.  But, I thought perhaps he had taken the day off or something and didn’t give it too much thought.  At 10:30 am I received a call from the lender – “Cari, we called to verify employment for Maria’s dad.  He was laid off three weeks ago.”

Allow me to digress for just a moment – have you ever seen the movie The Wedding Singer?  There’s a line in that movie that we say around the office a lot – “Once again, things that could have been brought to my attention YESTERDAY!” I’m including it here if you haven’t seen it.  It’s at the 1:20 mark –

Maria’s dad not working was information that we needed to know the minute it had happened.  On the morning of closing, though, time was too tight and circumstances had become too unwieldy to save this sale.  Maria and her dad were unable to buy the house, and to say she was devastated would be putting it mildly.

Fast forward about two weeks, the listing agent on this deal had mentioned the situation to another lender who thought she could help.  Since she went in to the deal knowing the circumstances of Maria’s dad’s unemployment, she had a different set of criteria to manage, and she thought she had a way to make it work.

I called Maria to see if she was still interested.  At first, she balked.  I asked, “I thought you loved that house?”

“Oh, I do!” she assured me.  “That’s the problem.  Cari, when I heard I couldn’t buy the house, my heart broke into a thousand tiny pieces.  I cannot put myself through that again.  I can’t get that far and then allow my heart to break once more.”

The phrase “…a thousand tiny pieces…” echoed through my mind.

She said she’d think about it, talk to her dad, and let me know.

The next time I spoke with her, she said her dad was sure that not getting the house had been a sign they weren’t supposed to buy it all.  “But I love it, Cari, I do.  I will try to convince him.”

Just after Thanksgiving she called me and said her dad was on board once again, and so was she.  But she asked me, “Cari, will it work?  Will I get the house?”  Again I heard her phrase “…a thousand tiny pieces…”  I told her I believed it really would work this time.  She said okay, and we went down this road again.

I am pleased to report that yesterday, just in time for Christmas, Maria and her dad closed on their home.  Her heart is safe, and they can celebrate in a place they love.  She texted me yesterday afternoon: “You have made me really happy.  Thank you for your help and Merry Christmas to you, too.  I have no words to thank you.”

She has no words.  She doesn’t need them.  The light in her eyes when I gave her the key spoke volumes.

I wish you joy this Christmas and as little heart break as possible.  Merry Christmas!

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About The Author
Cari McGee

My husband and I came to the Tri-Cities in 1994, and we thought it would be a temporary stop on our way to larger cities. He was a television sports anchor at the time, and we planned to go wherever the "next step up" took us. Twenty-plus years later, we're still here and we've loved every minute of it! We have two children now, and we've found the Tri-Cities area is a wonderful place to raise a family. It's a great place to do outdoorsy things -- I like to hike Badger Mountain or run along the river path. I also love reading ... by a cozy fire in the winter or a beautiful picture window in the summer (with the A/C on!). I've been a licensed Realtor since 2004. I earned my managing broker's license in 2016, which means I can run my own brokerage, or create a team of real estate agents and supervise them, which is exactly what I did when I formed the Cari McGee Real Estate Team in 2018! We have administrative and marketing personnel, as well as additional agents to serve you. I became a director of the Tri-Cities Association of Realtors Board of Directors in 2016, became Secretary/Treasurer of the organization, and was elected to Vice President in 2019. Want to talk about real estate? Click here to schedule a meeting with me!

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