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Now in a mess, she regrets dumping her broker

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis February 15, 2013 06:31 AM

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Chocgirl grossly overpaid for her house back during the bubble years and now regrets it. Big time.

Her potential dream home has turned into a financial nightmare - renovations cost $150,000 more than she had originally estimated.

And as she examines how she got into such a mess, Chocgirl has decided that her foundational mistake, so to speak, was firing her "pushy" broker and going it alone. Here's a link to her comment on my post about the worst tips for home sellers.

We decided that, shucks, we sure didn't need a broker and just bought a house from the owner. Well, that was the biggest mistake we could ever have made. I really didn't love our broker which was part of the reason we ditched her. But you know what, I believe she would have told us were CRAZY to buy this house. Or at least INSANE to pay what we did.

Chocgirl's take is definitely not politically correct these days - broker bashing dominates the comment section of this blog. After all, it's been one tough market over the past few years and there are legions of disenchanted homeowners, sellers and buyers out there feeling abused.

I'd have to agree with Chocgirl to a certain extent - given that she was clearly a novice, firing her opinionated broker and doing it on her own was probably pretty clueless.

Yet Chocgirl makes the same error that many broker bashers do, ascribing far too much power to what are basically semi-amateur sales people.

It makes sense to avail yourself of whatever help you can when buying or selling a home - especially if you have never done it before. And yes, there will be a price for it - it's called a commission.

But the buck stops with you. You are the one that makes the final decision. My sympathies to Chocgirl, but she is na´ve to think that some commission-only salesperson was going to save her from her own bad judgment. Maybe her "pushy" broker would have urged caution, but would that have truly made a difference?

Conversely, for the broker bashers out there, no broker can sell you a bill of goods without your compliance. And with all the data available online now, home buyers are in a much stronger position than they were five or ten years ago.

Here's Chocgirl's full comment - it's worth taking a look at. And Chocgirl, if you are reading this, more details about your house and your experience with it would be great.

I have to tell you about ten years ago, in the real estate boom, we made a huge mistake. We decided that, shucks, we sure didn't need a broker and just bought a house from the owner. Well, that was the biggest mistake we could ever have made. I really didn't love our broker which was part of the reason we ditched her. But you know what, I believe she would have told us were CRAZY to buy this house. Or at least INSANE to pay what we did. The house almost from the get go has been a financial drain. And now are in the midst of renovating it so ultimately it will be a great home...only we will spend literally $150,000 more than we expected. Had we just stuck with the broker we would have gotten a much better house from the get-go, and not have had to deal with all the problems we've experienced. Part of this, also IMHO, was the piece of sh-t home inspector. How he missed all the problems with this home is beyond me. And had we had a broker she would have been all over it. She never would have told us to buy this house. I really believe it, because although she was a bit difficult, she was also very open and pushy. And I don't think she would have steered us in this direction. Yes, ultimately we are the adults and to blame, but having a broker could have made a huge difference. But yet, we are in the situation we are in today and not a damn thing we can do now. Sigh...


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About boston real estate now
Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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