Right in the middle of my buyers' home inspection in South Land Park last month, I had received a text message that another client's offer was accepted. We had but a mere hour to return the signed counter offer. So, I rushed back to my Land Park home office to pull the offer off the FAX (why can't agents email them?) and send the counter offer to the agent. Then I hopped back in my car to return to the home inspection.
Zipped up to the curb. Crunch. I heard a noise. Jumped out of the car and looked around near the curb but I couldn't find anything. We finished up the home inspection 90 minutes later, and I returned to my car. On my windshield was a note with a name, address and phone number. It said: "Dear Realtor, you broke my sprinkler head; I replaced it. Please be more careful."
I felt awful. I had damaged someone else's property.
I immediately called the owner and left an apologetic voice mail message. Then I asked my husband how much sprinkler heads cost, but he didn't know. So I Googled sprinkler heads. Looked like they cost under $10. Still, it's the principle of the thing; it's not the money. It's my Midwestern upbringing. When you do something wrong, you've got to make it right.
So, I wrote a handwritten note to the owner, apologizing as best I could for breaking his sprinkler head, inserted a $20 bill and mailed it. A few days later, I received an email from the owner, thanking me for taking responsibility. Turns out he works at the same law firm as another client to whom I sold a home in East Sacramento.
Yesterday, my South Land Park buyers signed loan documents. We were waiting for the completion letter from the sewer company confirming that the sewer line had been replaced. Without the completion letter, closing would be delayed. I checked with the sewer company.
The sewer company said the sewer line took an unexpected turn in the front yard and actually connects to the next-door neighbor's sewer line. They could not complete the work without receiving permission from the neighbor to dig in the neighbor's yard. One of their workers put a note on the neighbor's door, but the neighbor did not respond. The sewer company asked if I knew how to get in touch with that neighbor.
Guess which neighbor that turned out to be?
Elizabeth Weintraub is an author, home buying columnist for The New York Times-owned About.com, a Land Park resident, and a Land Park real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown and East Sacramento. Weintraub is also a Sacramento Short Sale agent who lists and successfully sells short sales throughout Sacramento. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put 35 years of real estate experience to work for you.
The Short Sale Savior, by Elizabeth Weintraub, available through bookstores everywhere and at Amazon.com.
Sacramento Short Sale Agent, Elizabeth Weintraub, has the answers to your Sacramento short sale questions.
Photo: Big Stock Photo
Elizabeth Weintraub is co-partner of Weintraub & Wallace Team of Top Producing Realtors, an author, home buying expert at The Balance, a Land Park resident, and a veteran real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown, Carmichael and East Sacramento, as well as tract homes in Elk Grove, Natomas, Roseville and Lincoln. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put our combined 80 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at RE/MAX Gold. DRE License # 00697006.
Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of RE/MAX Gold. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice; it could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to elizabethweintraub.com.