You have fallen in love with your dream home.
It has the rooms, the yard size you want, the sparkling
pool. You can imagine whose room is going to be whose. If
you’re a guy, you’ve got your man cave all staked out.
It is perfection. You want it bad. Then you find out.
The shudder is coming from me, your real estate agent. I
know what this is going to do to you. You, on the other
hand, shiver. You shiver with delight because you are so
in love with this house. You’re about ready to sacrifice
whatever to get it. You have already convinced yourself
you need this house. And if you’ve ever tried to talk
common sense to someone who is head over heels in love,
forget it. It’s futile.
I try and explain that this new object of their affection
will cause them pain, more pain than they may ever
experienced before, but like the forbidden fruit, that
just makes them want it more.
Make no mistake, the emotions involved when trying to buy
a short sale don’t differ much from unrequited love. At
least when you get dumped by a person, you know where
you’re going to live.
Oh yes, you’ll feel lost and cheated that you’ve spent all
your time and energy waiting for this house. You can’t
move forward, but your lease is coming due on the place
you rented while waiting for this to come through.
Stress sets in.
You thought for sure it couldn’t take that long even
though you were warned — by me — several times. You’re
just locked in limbo.
And then there’s the feeling of being ignored. Week after
week of no answer from the bank, no acknowledgement from
the bank that you even exist. Did they not feel your love
But that’s not all.
Take that short sale mixture of mucky feelings and add
time, mix in frustration, fold in anxiety and a huge dash
or irritability. Are we all ready to pick heartbreak yet
No matter how much I explain how frustrating short sales
are, the love and desire for the new house seems to
outweigh all of that, at first. Then the third or fourth
month rolls around and that love seems to slip a little.
The time it takes for a short sale to be approved will
slowly diminish the beauty of the home just like the lack
of personality will whittle away the good looks of the
hottest girl in high school.
And just like I warned them, they get pissed off.
Really, really pissed off.
“I’m not mad at you Diane, I’m mad at the banks,” they
And no, they don’t get upset with me, but they do start
yelling through me like the bank’s asset manager is
standing behind me. I take it all in. I calmly answer and
explain over and over and over again the process, the
uncertainties, the frustration. Sometimes all the warning
and the talking in the world just doesn’t do any good.
Like a parent, sometimes you have to let your friends and
clients go down a path you know they shouldn’t. All you
can do is advise and warn and give options but,
ultimately, people are going to do what they want to, so
you watch them go through the pain they could have easily
You’re there for support, comfort, encouragement. And you
refrain. You refrain like I refrain from yelling out, “I
told you so!”
Diane Brennan is Your Voice in Real Estate for the
Phoenix, Arizona metro area. She also co-hosts That
Real Estate Show with Linda Williams every Saturday at
3pm on News Talk 92.3 KTAR. She failed miserably at
pursuing a career in Gold Digging and currently helps
people buy and sell property everywhere in the Phoenix
metro area from Scottsdale to Paradise Valley to Goodyear
and Chandler. Rumor is she knows her stuff and can be
quite enjoyable to be around for long periods of time.
Her driving….not so much.