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May 18, 2005

To The Person Who Made a Fake Offer on Our House

To the person who made a fake offer on our house,

Last Monday you made an offer on our house. We believed (through our and your realtor) that you really loved the house and wanted to live in it enough that you put a bid in. When you made an offer over the asking price with solid financing we believed you were the right buyer for our home and stopped showing it to other folks.

We didn't anticipate that when you made the offer, it was just a way to distract us from a real buyer while you worked on your plan to devalue our home. It wasn't until we came home from the inspection and noticed that the house looked like had been "inspected" by a burglar looking for a hidden treasure, leaving everything in a state of disarray. That's when we started to think something was wrong.

Shortly after, we started hearing rumors about debates with the inspector about the seriousness of certain conditions. It appears that your goal during the inspection was not about finding what might be a real problem, but to try to get the report to indicate tens of thousands of dollars worth of urgent repairs. To do so, you frantically looked through our home trying to find things that you could use to justify a drastic reduction in your offer. Unfortunately, even though you spent a full week to get that certain inspector who you hoped would say our house was a piece of crap, he or she did not say so.

Yesterday you withdrew your offer based on the inspection, but the truth is the inspection didn't turn up anything significant. Faced with that fact, you withdrew your offer with a lame, and sketchy letter about all the problems that make our house unfit. It's almost comical in points, and obvious that you had to make things up that weren't true to make the letter sound more official. For example, your letter says that the hot water heater is damaged and needs replaced. Um, we do not have a water heater. Our furnace provides continuous hot water.

In the end, it's clear that your tactic was to bid high and then come in and attempt to justify a huge reduction ("tens of thousands", you say in your comments) based on the inspection. Unfortunately, the inspection didn't give you any leverage and so you end up you embarrassing yourself and your realtor (who has apologized to us) with a sorry excuse for withdrawing. You didn't even bother to counter, because you knew you were caught when you found out we had several backup offers from people who had provided more honest offers.

As much as I dislike your tactics, the thing that makes me the most upset is that you wasted a week of our time. I wish there was a public listing of people like you so other people could know to avoid offers from you.

You see, we love our house and believe it's a good home, despite the fact that it was built in 1928. It has a lot of history and charm. Even though there are some problems, we've lived in it for 5 years very happily and will not sell it to someone who snakes their way into a "deal." We'd rather sell it for less to someone who is honest with us.

Posted by mike at May 18, 2005 1:16 PM