Home Selling in California>Question Details

Gennifer, Home Buyer in 90808

We'd like to move from Long Beach, CA to a small mountain town, w/ a very limited inventory of homes.

Asked by Gennifer, 90808 Wed Aug 29, 2007

Will a good agent write a contract for us in which he/she agrees to stipulate that the sale of our home is contingent upon our finding a suitable house to purchase in this small mountain town? We asked an agent about this and she flat out wouldn't consider it. We don't want to sell our home and not have a suitable one in this mountain town. (Most homes in this town seem to be on the market six months and longer despite the limited inventory) Thank you!

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The CAR contingency form has an entire paragraph that describes the contingency for seller to find and purchase a suitable replacement property. You have a right to place this contingency in your listing and in any offer that is brought to you. - That's the "good" news.

The bad news is that such a contingency tends to discourage agents from bringing potential buyers to your home and discourages the buyers who see the home from making an offer. The agent that refused to list your house this way had a right to reject the idea. It does not make economic sense for her to take a listing with such a huge marketing drawback.

In todays market there are many highly motivated sellers that you would be competing with. Their houses will sell before yours does. The contingency that you want to have screams "I am not a highly motivated seller!" The only way to counter such a negative message to buyers in your marketing would be to offer the property you are selling at a significant discount to market value, and / or offer buyers agent a higher than market commission split.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 30, 2007
Jim Walker, Real Estate Pro in Carmichael, CA
MVP'08
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If you are in a buyers market and the buyers can choose from a number of homes that will be available on their time table, you stand to lose that buyer to a competing property. If you are not willing to move until you find a replacement residence, then that must be disclosed and many buyers will shy away from even looking at your property.

The listing agent and broker take on the responsibility of a time and expense investment to sell your home. Some agents and brokers will determine the likelihood of selling is compromised and their investment will not bring a return. Agents and brokers are carrying the costs of marketing homes for extended periods of time in a sellers market and need to represent the properties which will most likely result in a sale.

It is also possible that you could get an offer which is contingent upon your buyer selling his/her current home. I certainly understand your desire to coordinate moves, and it is a common goal. If you make that an absolute requirement, it will limit your buyer pool and effectively reduce your potential sales price. As much as I understand your desire for smooth continuity, I would recommend that you place that as a “secondary want” vs. a “primary requirement.”
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 30, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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Hello Gennifer, What a good REALTOR should be able to provide you is some information and scenarios that fit your situation. Many agents, because of the length of time to sell right now, might be reluctant to assist with such an offer. But that doesn't mean that it isn't possible--there are numerous factors to consider first and the outcome would depend on those factors. It's understandable that you don't want to leap before looking.
If you are still in need of further advice, feel free to get in touch with me! I will try to "lay it out" for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 12, 2007
Funny, I have the same situation in a California mountain town. My seller does not want to sell her home and have no where to go. I don't want to spend time and marketing dollars on a house where I really don't have the authority to sell it. A potential buyer wouldn't want to get into a contract with restrictions where they may not be able to buy the house. It could be a waste of time for everyone concerned.
You can put your house on the market and make a contingent offer that states you cannot purchase unless your house is sold. It will be up to the seller of the house you want to purchase if they will accept your offer or not. They may want to keep it on the market so they do not lose any potential buyers in case your house does not sell. All of this is written into the California contract (CAR Forms) Many sellers will accept a contingent offer with a 72 hour clause where you have 72 hours to remove the contingency if they get a better offer.
You may just want to sell your house and rent until your perfect mountain house becomes available.
Best wishes with your move.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 7, 2007
Our market today has a lot of inventory and it would be a challenge to find a buyer who is willing to wait while you located your replacement home.

If you found your replacement home prior to selling yours then you are asking the seller to wait for you to sell yours while you mention your inventory is on the market for 6 months. It is a balancing act. You are really not a buyer till your a seller.

Is there a chance you can make a double more if necessary? To answer you question, maybe they will but will your home be show with that stipulation and will you find a buyer that is willing to wait in an uncertain market place?
Web Reference: http://pamwinterbauer.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 30, 2007
Pam Winterba…, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
MVP'08
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