You've heard the adage time and again - if something seems too good to be true, then it probably is. That's how I'm feeling right now about the house we were buying. No, it wasn't our "dream house", nor did it have every single thing for which we might have wished - but it did have everything we needed.
We'd recently found a house on two acres, in the country, with a huge pole barn/garage combination that we thought was perfect for us and our menagerie. We need to have a cat-free house so our daughter and grandson can come to visit again. They have cat allergies (go figure, and me with all these cats) and we've truly missed hosting family dinners and holiday celebrations. We thought we'd found the answer to our prayers and our cat housing dilemma.
We contacted the realtor and toured the property and house. (I fell in love with the brand new kitchen as soon as I saw it.) We placed a bid on the house, negotiated a price, and were told the offer had been accepted and the house was ours. A time for closing was agreed upon and we went about the task of making sure all of our papers and contracts were in order.
We were literally sitting at the table at the title office ready to close on the deal when word came that the seller was refusing to come to the closing, refusing to sign any papers, and refusing to accept the downpayment check we had in-hand. We were stunned, to say the least. Our truck and car were filled with boxes of our home goods we planned to take to the "new" house that very evening. Our daughter and her family were in the area and planned to stop at the new house and take the grand tour as well. What were we going to do?
We were advised to go ahead and sign all the contracts, which we did. We also left the check, to show good faith and intention. We hoped the seller would come to his senses and call or change his mind, but to date, he has not called nor contacted us in any way. He has finally begun to communicate with our realtor, but we still don't know why he backed out of the contract. We hear he has some personal issues and some debts that need to be paid. Well, we have some issues too, like how much we were counting on this house, but I don't think he cares.
We've been waiting for something to change, but nothing has. The seller was able to derail our closing, prevent us from buying the house, and in the process, he inadvertantly cost us hundreds of dollars in fees for the realtor, the lending institution, and inspections. No one has offered us any refunds so here we sit.
Yesterday I had an appointment with a real estate attorney. He assured me our affairs are completely in order and affirmed the seller had definitely breached the contract. He seemed hopeful this could be resolved with a sternly worded letter to the seller. I hope so. We do not want to resort to litigation. Not only is it expensive, it could drag on for months or years. We still want the house, but if it's not to be, we'll have to call it an expensive lesson and find something else. Things could always be worse, right? At least we hadn't sold this house, so we still have a roof over our heads.
Right now our home is in a state of complete chaos. We had taken everything off the walls, packed many of our things, and sold some of our furniture in preparation for the move, then things came to a screeching halt. So we continue to wait....