The property I own is a legal three family house that I got as part of my divorce settlement in 2009 in Connecticut. I had the agent price it for quick sale because I owe the IRS a lot of money ($100K) and have a deadline looming in two months to pay them and the state in full. It was a distress sale.
I asked the listing agent what would happen if I decided not to sell, if some white knight rescued me and I was able to satisfy my debts without liquidating this house (which would be my only asset in the world because I lived on an IRA while my divorce was going on, and that's gone and I owed the IRS for not having enough withheld for taxes and penalties, I'm also a SAHM, not working outside since 2004, and over 50). She put in the contract that instead of the usual 1% of the purchase price (which would have been about six grand) that I would reimburse the firm for their marketing expenses.
In the meantime I got several offers and accepted the one closest to my asking price. The potential buyer is an engineer himself and said they wanted to do inspections first (I assume that they wanted to see what they were getting into, and perhaps adjust the price accordingly). They performed lead, asbestos, mold, and radon tests this week and had a thorough building inspection yesterday. If all went well, the buyers were ready to sign contracts by this week's end.
Yesterday I was in court with my ex and to my shock, the judge ordered him to pay me back monies he has owed me since 2007. I am in a position to pay my tax debt without liquidating this property, which would have netted me maybe $75,000 after paying off my debts. The ca;pital gains tax would have taken the bigest chunk and I would have nothing. I live in a small rental apartment with my teenage daughter.
I fell terrible for the broker, who as you can imagine is furious with me and is regretting that she is letting me off the hook for less than 1%. I assured her that I was happy with her performance but that my circumstances had changed. She tried everything to talk me out of it but I just can't give away my only asset if there was any way to rescue it.
thank you all for your excellent responses. I will check with my lawyer if I can get him on the phone!