The Running Realtor: Ever had to SELL a listing from HELL ?

A blend of ramblings about Real Estate & Running around New Haven County and the Connecticut Shoreline

Ever had to SELL a listing from HELL ?

Mine was a brick ranch that looked kind of cute, it sat in a town outside my normal route.  An entry level home, I priced it to sell, three months later I called it my listing from hell.

The road was quite busy which was easy to see, but some other facts were discoveries to me.  First was road  flooding from minimal rains, took several days for puddles to drain. Also an airport was nearby, ensured plenty of noise up in the sky. 

Inside it offered some challenges too, the owner was friendly but wanted nothing to do. I went on vacation and let the place stew.

After a week it was ready to show, a quick offer came in - unacceptable low.  A few weeks later, the offer was greater. The owner accepted, we had a signed deal, took my wife out for a celebration meal.  The next day was kind of a pain in the neck, buyer never came up with the deposit check.

The third time around happened later at night. After loosing two deals my seller put up a fight.  His getting tough made negotiations rough. Stubborn and tired my seller decide to sleep on it, the buyer got nervous and took a fit, withdrew the offer not willing to wait, Oh what a night ain't that just great.

Three months after listing, negotiations again. My seller gets meaner not willing to talk, fortunately for us the buyer didn't walk.

Now the horror of inspection day!  I arrive before three to find a new sign out front on the tree.  Blindsided by this I hadn't a clue - my seller left town, what should I do?  

It's always fun to reminisce, anyone else got a story like this?

Comment balloon 23 commentsNo Longer Active • February 22 2007 09:26PM


If the sign is real, I hope you didn't spend a lot of money on this listing. Whats the name of the bank on the sign? That is a start, or maybe you should have spent more time on due diligence.
Posted by David Spencer, Show Me real estate in Kansas City (Keller Williams Northland) over 12 years ago

Yes, I have had a listing from Hell.

Is this a true story? Dan, please, do tell...

Is that you sitting on the step to the left,

or is that the owner looking forlorn and bereft?


Posted by Lanette Branch, Bel Air, MD REALTOR (RE/MAX Components) over 12 years ago

Yes.... TRUE!  ..... I was blindside but I think fast... wasn't Clueless as far as what to do...

The guy on the step was the Buyer before his agent or inspector arrived.

Here is an area MAP,  I will follow up with part two when I have time.

Posted by No Longer Active (Real Estate) over 12 years ago
Dan:  I can't wait for part two!  I will always tell myself if I have a listing from hell that it can always be worse!  WOW!
Posted by Renée Donohue~Home Photography, Western Michigan Real Estate Photographer (Savvy Home Pix) over 12 years ago

We've had plenty of listings from Hell - but nothing like this - can't wait to get part 2.


Posted by Rick & Ines - Miami Beach Real Estate (Majestic Properties) over 12 years ago

You couldn't have had the listing from hell because I hold them all exclusively in my portfolio solely..  but i am willing to share :)


Posted by Desiree Daniels (RE/MAX Tri County) over 12 years ago

Dan - don't leave us hanging for too long - some here may need to learn from what you're going through.  How did things work out?  What did you do?

Posted by Ann Cummings, Portsmouth NH Real Estate Preferrable Agent (RE/MAX Shoreline - NH and Maine) over 12 years ago

Yes Dan, In our our area we call listings from hell "Career Listings" owned by "Satan"!  I have had my share of them and hope I don't see many more.

Keep your chin up - George

Posted by George Tallabas, Idaho Real Estate (RE/MAX Advantage) over 12 years ago
My "listing from Hell" was more about the "seller from Hell".  I won't go into details (to protect the guilty), but we've all had them right?
Posted by Carol Williams, Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager (Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals.) over 12 years ago

Dan, I want to hear the rest of the story too.


Posted by Laurie Manny (Long Beach CA Real Estate) over 12 years ago
Back in the early 90's, when the market went south like it has lately, I had 3 customers that owed more on their houses than the sale price would be for their houses. One needed to bring 26,000 to closing.  My settlement officer would call them before settlement and require that they have verified their funds to him prior to settlement. Also I quess it's time for the old SHORT SALEs again.  I would contact the bank and see if you can't make a deal with them for a short sale.  Many banks would rather do this than have a forclosure. 
Posted by Debbie Cook, Silver Spring and Takoma Park Maryland Real Estate (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc) over 12 years ago
Sign me up.  I'll patiently wait for the running REALTOR's part II.
Posted by Chris Griffith, Bonita Springs Listing Agent (Downing-Frye Realty, Bonita Springs, FL) over 12 years ago
Dan, what gives, how dare you leave us hanging out here like this.  Let us know the outcome, unreal.  Yes, my wife actually had a deal a little like this one.  Keep smiling Dan, things cannot get much worse, just better.
Posted by Bob Sloop, Consultant, Indianapolis, IN (RS Mortgage Consulting) over 12 years ago


I'm sure that most of us have had the "listing from Hell" at one time or another.  I just got rid of one of those pesky listings.  It was so smoke infested that I could hardly breathe in that home.  The owner had inherited the home and was disappointed that I couldn't get an offer.  After all, the list of smokers is getting smaller everyday and a non-smoker surely wouldn't buy it.  For the record, it's STILL on the market but I'm not spending my advertising dollars on it anymore.

Posted by Diane Bell, Hilton Head Real Estate, Bluffton (Charter 1 Real Estate, Hilton Head, Bluffton, SC) over 12 years ago
I'm patiently waiting for part two
Posted by Tyler Wedel (THIRD TENNESSEE REALTY) over 12 years ago

Sorry .... I write even slower than I run..    :-)

And this story ( ALL TRUE ) takes a while to recap - Here is Part Two....


Posted by No Longer Active (Real Estate) over 12 years ago

Dan I must go read part 2! :)

Posted by Suzanne Sands, Somerset MA Real Estate (Pavao Real Estate) almost 12 years ago
Hmmm...  sounds like one of mine!
Posted by Sandi Bauman, Chico CA Realtor (Chico Homes Real Estate) over 11 years ago
Dan - so - what happened - I will try and find it - but you could save me the time
Posted by Thesa Chambers, Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon (Fred Real Estate Group) over 11 years ago
Thesa... There is a link to part two in the comment in the comment above on  2/23/07
Posted by No Longer Active (Real Estate) over 11 years ago
Dan - Thanks for introducing me to another one of your hidden talents!  I have had listings like that, but could never describe them as poetically as you do!  Mostly because cuss words are hard to rhyme.  :)
Posted by Barbara Hershey, Realtor, Maine Real Estate about 11 years ago
That is incredible.  I don't want to experience this.  I might end up needing medication to calm down.
Posted by Latonia Parks, Certified Military Relocation Expert (Top Bragg Realty, Fayetteville NC, Home of the 82d ABN DIV) about 11 years ago

Look at this, even back in the day Dano was a poet;-)

Posted by Jason Sardi, Your Agent for Life (Auto & Home & Life Insurance throughout North Carolina) over 10 years ago

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