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Eloise at The Plaza💃🏻- TBG Update 3/13/2022

Eloise at The Plaza💃🏻- TBG Update 3/13/2022

I’m excited to be working with one of my favorite clients, buying a condo at The Ritz Carlton Residences at LA Live in Downtown LA and then selling and downsizing from their Hancock Park home. I loved working with this family all 4 times we worked together in the past and I’m SO looking forward to our interactions now. The Ritz Carlton residences are kind of cool. The biggest attractions to my client are: the lavish daily buffet breakfast that’s open for several hours each morning, the beautiful pool area with cabanas and sunbeds, the residents’ common area sparkling clean lounges, a beautiful movie theater reserved by appointment, a gym + spa, concierge, security, and valet. The lobby of The Ritz Carlton connects to The Marriott, where there’s a bustling lobby with a coffee and bake shop. Movie theaters are right across the street. Walking through the Ritz Carlton residence floors, I felt like Eloise at The Plaza. It’s kind of cool to think of retiring at The Ritz!

We closed 180 S Vista this week. When we put the property on the market, we got multiple offers over asking very quickly and we opened escrow. An appraiser came out, confirmed the value at purchase price, and the appraisal contingency was removed. The buyers inspected and sent a request for repairs. The buyers represented verbally that their loan was approved and they could remove all contingencies immediately if the seller signed off on their sizable request. I said the seller would sign off. I asked the agent to send me the loan contingency removal and then I’d send the signatures on the repair request, and they’d remove the rest of their contingencies. And then they decided to cancel. That was a shock because the deal was done. But within two days of cancellation, we had a whole new round of multiple offers way over asking. We shared all the canceled buyer’s inspection reports with the new people who wrote offers, and we chose to go into escrow with an offer that was contingency free and a five day close. And the excited buyer closed in 5 days, as promised.

This experience is one we’re seeing repeatedly on many houses. Buyers jump into escrow at a price that feels high to them, they inspect and reconsider, the first buyer cancels, but there are so many new buyers waiting, and the second or third buyer closes. It used to be threatening to a seller when buyers sent a large repair request with a threat that a seller would need to disclose inspection reports about the condition of the property to future buyers. It used to be that properties only got offers way over the asking price within a short time of being listed on the market. In today’s climate, disclosing inspection reports is not threatening to buyers who want to buy a house in a market with limited supply. Given the limited supply, days on market won’t stop buyers from writing offers way over asking if they want a house. As agents, we’re doing triple the work because often we’re selling houses three times. But then they all close at prices we’re proud to advertise to other sellers who want to do the same.

We’re also spending lots of time negotiating escrow extensions. On one of our listings (that also went into escrow way over the asking price, canceled, and then went into escrow at the exact same high price with the second buyer), three days before the sale was actually going to close, as the buyer was signing lender closing disclosures, the buyer saw a $15,000 charge from the lender and the buyer decided not to continue with the loan. The buyer asked the seller to please wait another 30 days so they could close with a new lender and a new loan process. It’s only fair for the buyers to compensate the sellers for waiting a whole new escrow period and there was a lengthy prolonged negotiation to figure out fair compensation. Of course through the time period of the new loan process the buyers are requesting access to the property to plan preparations post close. And of course as agents we’re working through all of it and accommodating everyone’s needs and getting the deal to the finish line so that it feels equitable and just all around.

Per diem fees (compensating sellers for their carrying costs when escrow is extended) are turning out to be frequent conversations. From a buyer’s perspective, they’re paying top dollar for their house in a tough market and therefore they believe sellers should patiently accommodate if buyers need some extra time to close. From a seller’s perspective, a contract is a contract and if buyers aren’t going to obey the time periods agreed to in the contract, then buyers should pay the sellers’ carrying costs from the contract close of escrow date to the actual close of escrow date. The only remedy available to a seller for non performance of a contract is issuing a demand to close escrow followed by cancellation. When a buyer needs an extension, and a buyer won’t agree to pay a per diem fee, sellers have a choice to grant the extension or to cancel the contract. It’s painful for all parties to cancel a contract and to start again at the very end of a contract escrow period. Buyers also stand to lose both their deposit and the house of their dreams if they don’t close on time and a seller cancels. And it’s painful to some sellers to extend without any compensation. I think an idea might be to establish a per diem plan upfront before escrow opens all the way at the beginning of the deals when negotiation is completely neutral between the parties.

My thought of the week is that I love my cousins. Many years ago, two brothers married two sisters. One couple had 9 kids and the other had 11 kids. They raised all 20 kids together because the dads were brothers and the moms were sisters. My mom was the baby, and so loved by everyone, in the family of 9. That’s because my mom was beautiful inside and out, she was spunky + sharp, she had a cool eye for aesthetics, she was talented in so many different ways, and she loved to crack jokes, laugh, and to have a good time. My mom loved her big extended family and of course her family knew it. I have so many cousins and it’s uncanny how similar we all are to each other! It makes sense because our genes are so similar given how our grandfathers were brothers and our grandmothers were sisters. It was so much fun to have my cousins visiting from Canada for dinner at my home Friday night! Dessert was blueberry pie! I love my family!

Have an awesome weekend!



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