Realtor Horror Stories

User Forum Topic
Submitted by Vod-Vil on April 6, 2010 - 7:36pm

This one is for all the Realtors out there.What is the weirdest thing you have seen while buying/selling a house?

Submitted by SD Realtor on April 6, 2010 - 7:40pm.

I had a listing in Carmel Valley a few years ago. The seller was not doing well and had some health issues. After a few months on the market it became hard to reach her. I went to the home and I noticed a very bad smell when I reached the front door.

Needless to say you can guess the rest.

**********

Not sure if that is the wierdest but it does stand out in my memory

Submitted by ybitz on April 6, 2010 - 11:29pm.

SD Realtor wrote:
I had a listing in Carmel Valley a few years ago. The seller was not doing well and had some health issues. After a few months on the market it became hard to reach her. I went to the home and I noticed a very bad smell when I reached the front door.

Needless to say you can guess the rest.

**********

Not sure if that is the wierdest but it does stand out in my memory

Yikes! Definitely weird. Did the place eventually sell? How much do things like that affects home value?

Submitted by SD Realtor on April 7, 2010 - 12:21am.

Not the home was not sold. It was part of the family trust and the family hung onto it and used it as a rental. Death on the property is a definite disclosure.

Submitted by CDMA ENG on April 7, 2010 - 11:03am.

SD Realtor wrote:
Not the home was not sold. It was part of the family trust and the family hung onto it and used it as a rental. Death on the property is a definite disclosure.

SDR,

Is it really? I could see it if it was a part of criminal case but natural death?

How come.

PS... My wife you have a fit if that was listed on our new house...

CE

Submitted by ybitz on April 7, 2010 - 11:17am.

Well, I assume it's a disclosure because it affects home value (whether it was criminal or natural death). Some people don't like living in a house where someone died recently. And I think the seller has to disclose material knowledge of information that affects home value.

Submitted by SD Realtor on April 7, 2010 - 11:51am.

Okay so I believe the letter of the code says that the disclosure for death is only mandatory within 3 years. However many buyers do consider it a material fact. I do not know for certain if the death happened past 3 years and if you did not disclose it if there would be a problem. For many clients I have worked with, death IN the home, be it natural causes or otherwise would be a showstopper.

Submitted by CDMA ENG on April 7, 2010 - 1:28pm.

I don't doubt it being a show-stopper. For my fiancee (I called her my wife above) THAT would be. Doesn't bother me one bit. Unless it was a mob hit that the mob thinks failed (dont want them coming back to finish the job).

Just find it strange that it has to be listed due to some peoples inability to get over superstition.

Thanks,

CE

Submitted by briansd1 on April 7, 2010 - 1:41pm.

CDMA ENG wrote:
I don't doubt it being a show-stopper. For my fiancee (I called her my wife above) THAT would be. Doesn't bother me one bit. Unless it was a mob hit that the mob thinks failed (dont want them coming back to finish the job).

Just find it strange that it has to be listed due to some peoples inability to get over superstition.

Thanks,

CE

I agree. If you live in an house or an old city like Philadelphia, chances are pretty good that someone died in the house.

I hear that in some parts of Europe, burial plots are only leased for 30 years. Then they build on top.

Some parts of San Diego were Indian burial sites.

Submitted by UCGal on April 7, 2010 - 2:48pm.

briansd1 wrote:

I agree. If you live in an house or an old city like Philadelphia, chances are pretty good that someone died in the house.

This is true.
I think I had the only 100+ year old home in the Philly area that didn't have someone die in it. I know because I bought from the 2nd occupants - a 104 year old woman and her 78 year old daughter - and they rented from the builder (the original occupant).

Personally - I think if someone dies peacefully at home - that's good karma for a house.

But then again, I have an antique rocking chair that my great grandmother died in... had a big Christmas dinner, sat done in her chair, content, and died.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on April 7, 2010 - 10:35pm.

do you have to disclose if someone had sex in the house?

Submitted by CDMA ENG on April 7, 2010 - 11:00pm.

UCGal wrote:
briansd1 wrote:

I agree. If you live in an house or an old city like Philadelphia, chances are pretty good that someone died in the house.

This is true.
I think I had the only 100+ year old home in the Philly area that didn't have someone die in it. I know because I bought from the 2nd occupants - a 104 year old woman and her 78 year old daughter - and they rented from the builder (the original occupant).

Personally - I think if someone dies peacefully at home - that's good karma for a house.

But then again, I have an antique rocking chair that my great grandmother died in... had a big Christmas dinner, sat done in her chair, content, and died.

I know that may have ruined christmas for the others members of the family... But honestly... That is about the best death one could ever wish for.

I would also agree that is good karma.

CE

Submitted by CA renter on April 7, 2010 - 11:37pm.

CDMA ENG wrote:
UCGal wrote:
briansd1 wrote:

I agree. If you live in an house or an old city like Philadelphia, chances are pretty good that someone died in the house.

This is true.
I think I had the only 100+ year old home in the Philly area that didn't have someone die in it. I know because I bought from the 2nd occupants - a 104 year old woman and her 78 year old daughter - and they rented from the builder (the original occupant).

Personally - I think if someone dies peacefully at home - that's good karma for a house.

But then again, I have an antique rocking chair that my great grandmother died in... had a big Christmas dinner, sat done in her chair, content, and died.

I know that may have ruined christmas for the others members of the family... But honestly... That is about the best death one could ever wish for.

I would also agree that is good karma.

CE

Was going to say the exact same thing.

Nice story, UCGal, and agree that a peaceful death of a nice person can be a good thing. I like the "history" that comes with old houses.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on April 7, 2010 - 11:49pm.

i for one would love to get a great d eal on a house that was a horrific murder scene...

Submitted by Aecetia on April 8, 2010 - 12:40am.

Do ghosts have to be disclosed?

Submitted by Navydoc on April 8, 2010 - 7:31am.

I can tell you with certainty that my wife would not have bought our current house if the previous owner died in it. The reason why I know this is that the husband did in fact die from a very aggressive cancer, and she wanted to make sure he didn't actually pass in the house. My wife is Laotian and in her culture this would indeed be a very bad thing to happen in a house that you wanted to buy. She would be looking for his spirit everywhere.

On a similar note, when I was stationed in Japan I bought a Samurai sword, but I had to buy a newer one that was made in the traditional way. My wife forbid the purchase of an old original one (and I had my eye on a real nice one in Kamakura) because in Japanese culture when the Samurai warrior dies his soul passes into his sword, and my wife didn't want the spirit of the dead warrior in the house.

You never quite know what beliefs you're going to run into when you marry into another culture.

Submitted by SD Realtor on April 8, 2010 - 9:29am.

Indeed Navy - Many people do not understand strong religous and other beliefs that do not want to live in a home where someone has passed.

Submitted by LuckyInOC on April 8, 2010 - 10:04am.

SD Realtor wrote:
Okay so I believe the letter of the code says that the disclosure for death is only mandatory within 3 years. However many buyers do consider it a material fact. I do not know for certain if the death happened past 3 years and if you did not disclose it if there would be a problem. For many clients I have worked with, death IN the home, be it natural causes or otherwise would be a showstopper.

Thanks SDR...

My mom passed one night in her sleep in Sep-01, 2 weeks after 9-11 at my childhood home. She was terminally ill and was on hospice for months. My dad stayed with her to say his good-byes until morning. In the morning, he called the mortuary to take her away.

He still lives in the same home. He turns 80 next week. I think his secret wish is to pass in the home also.

Us kids will either use, rent, or sell the home after he passes. This is good to know if we intend to sell...

Lucky In OC

Submitted by sdrealtor on April 8, 2010 - 10:20am.

I dont have anything quite so morbid but perhaps some will find it close. A few years back I listed a clients property for sale in Vista. Two days later a young Mexican girl living a couple doors down gave birth and tossed the baby in the trash. It was all over the news. Then about 1 week later, there was the big Mexican protest where they all walked out from work for a day. It ended in a fairly big riot on the corner of N Santa Fe and Bobier which was a block from the home also. This also was all over the news channels. Left me wondering how I would sell the house.

Submitted by pencilneck on April 8, 2010 - 10:58am.

OT: Different kind of Realtor horror story

In 2007 I was buying a six pack of beer at a liquor store in North Park. The man behind the register was wearing a name-tag that indicated he was a Realtor. I assumed he was wearing it as a joke.

"Are you really a Realtor?" I asked

"Yes" he replied "Would you like to buy a house?"

I said no, but nonetheless he slipped his business card into my change and told me to call him when I was ready.

Submitted by jeeman on April 8, 2010 - 2:06pm.

pencilneck, I can see why Realtors buy nice cars to project an image of success...you have to!

There is this realtor near my old rental house in PQ, and his firm is called "Smart Realty" or something like that. He drives a small white Smart Car. Right, very smart...I'm not going in that car to go look at homes! Very smart...now we have to take 2 cars to go look at homes and burn more gas than if we just took one.

Very Smart.

Submitted by PCinSD on April 8, 2010 - 3:22pm.

Shortly before finding this site in 2007, I looked at a condo in Cortez Hill. One of the older complexes close to the 163. I met the realtor there and she let me know as we walked in that the previous owner had passed away in it. The door jambs were busted out from the police/emergency personnel breaking in. The place was trashed. She hadn't done anything to the place since she purchased it in the '80's.

I rent a small apartment in a bankers hill complex. There's been 2 units come vacant over the past several years because the tenants were found dead in their bathtubs. The manager told me he always discloses this to prospective new tenants. It's gotta be a little creepy taking your first bath/shower in one of those units.

Submitted by CDMA ENG on April 8, 2010 - 10:08pm.

Ok... Ok...

I don't mean to be insentive but it is simply not realistic to say "I am not going to do "X" because someone passed away here".

There are very few place that doesn't have someone who died somewhere...

Hell... Hotel Del Mar is supposed to be filled with ghost and that does not keep anyone away. Been to the hospital? Same thing...

Its just not realistic to me.

CE

Submitted by svelte on April 9, 2010 - 8:00am.

For my wife and I, whether a death would affect our decision would depend on the cause of death.

If it was a murder where the assailant is unknown, we probably would not buy for fear there is some sort of continuing grudge against the family. We can't exactly hang a "the XYZ family has MOVED and no longer lives here!" banner across the front of the house.

If the death was of natural causes, it might give us pause if it happened recently (like the 3 year figure) but price fixes everything. :-) For the right price, we'd buy it!

Submitted by CDMA ENG on April 9, 2010 - 8:39am.

svelte wrote:
For my wife and I, whether a death would affect our decision would depend on the cause of death.

If it was a murder where the assailant is unknown, we probably would not buy for fear there is some sort of continuing grudge against the family. We can't exactly hang a "the XYZ family has MOVED and no longer lives here!" banner across the front of the house.

If the death was of natural causes, it might give us pause if it happened recently (like the 3 year figure) but price fixes everything. :-) For the right price, we'd buy it!

Totally agree.

That is why I made the mob hit comment...

My buddy has a girlfriend who rents a place where someone died. She claims the spectre visits here from time to time. One of the so called benevolt ghost it think. I was kind of shocked that she brought it up because we were at a dinner party with ppl she really didn't know that well. Before I knew half of the people in the room had personal ghost stories... Couldn't believe it... But hey... I don't judge.

Point is...

Ghost just don't like me... They just don't find me that interesting of a personality to reveal themselves to me! :P

Plus I catch one living in my house they are going to do the vacumming and BETTER leave the toliet seat up!

:P

CE

P.S. Svelte... That is brilliant idea... Hell! We both grew up with Scooby Doo... We find a house on the MLS... Fake haunt it for 6 months... Watch the asking price fall to zero... and with luck some meddling kids won't come around before the bid goes through... Perfect!

P.S.S.

Because I cannot add great wisdom to the board I will be the comic relief from now on! :P

Submitted by SD Realtor on April 9, 2010 - 9:58am.

My favorite is the Sam Sulieman story. I posted about it back in 2006 or 2007. He was a sheister and got busted for fraud. Fox news was doing an investigation on him when he lost it and attacked the reporter while they were filming the interview. His wife jumped in as well.

Submitted by OwnerOfCalifornia on April 9, 2010 - 10:19am.
Submitted by Ren on April 13, 2010 - 1:29pm.

The letter of California law is 3 years mandatory disclosure of a death as SDR said. If it happened prior to 3 years ago, the seller doesn't have to volunteer the information, but they still have to disclose if asked. (I KNEW I took those RE classes for a reason!)

Some states, Hawaii is one that I know of, require the seller to disclose hauntings. As much as skeptics like to pretend they don't happen, they do (whether the cause is a ghost or something more down-to-earth), and if it was disclosed, I'm guessing it would affect the price.

The house we bought in Temecula had a suicide on the premises 6 months prior. She died at the hospital. The house was perfect, so for us, the location, etc. far outweighed the morbid history. No evidence whatsoever that she stuck around, but that didn't stop us from feeling a teeny bit spooked for the first few weeks. For the most part we don't think about it anymore.

Submitted by svelte on April 13, 2010 - 9:43pm.

CDMA ENG wrote:

P.S. Svelte... That is brilliant idea... Hell! We both grew up with Scooby Doo... We find a house on the MLS... Fake haunt it for 6 months... Watch the asking price fall to zero... and with luck some meddling kids won't come around before the bid goes through... Perfect!

lol

Idea was all yours, CDMA...no credit due me!

I'll certainly show up to assist hoping to catch a glimpse of Daphne Blake, hoping she's aged well...she was really HOT for a cartoon chick...maybe the S&M tinge of her being gagged & bound in several episodes didn't hurt things...

Oh, these imaginary worlds us humans build...

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.