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    Send You Off The Rails

    | Nashville, TN, USA | Home Improvement, Liars & Scammers

    (I am self-employed in the real estate appraisal business. I have made an FHA appraisal of a home that needs some minor repair. Once the repairs have been made, it will be necessary for me to re-inspect the home to make sure that the repairs have been satisfactorily completed. In this case, I have required that railings be installed around the front porch and stairway because they are several feet above the walkway. Shortly after submitting the appraisal and repair list, I received a call from the seller’s realtor.)

    Realtor: “I want to talk to you about the repairs you required. Why do we have to put up stair and porch railings?”

    Me: “It’s an FHA requirement. When a home sells with FHA financing, it has to meet minimum safety standards set by FHA.”

    Realtor: “Well, I don’t see why they’re necessary. The house already has an FHA loan. Why weren’t the railings required when my client bought the house?”

    Me: “I don’t know. Maybe the other appraiser wasn’t paying attention.”

    Realtor: “Why can’t you just look the other way?”

    Me: “I’m sorry. That’s not the way I do business.”

    Realtor: “We’re not going to put up the railings. And that’s that.”

    Me: “I understand your frustration, but it seems to be a shame that you’re going to allow this sale to be killed over a few hundred dollars.”

    Realtor: *long pause* “Okay, but you can’t charge for the repair inspection.”

    Me: “What do you mean?”

    Realtor: “I mean if we’re going to pay for a repair that’s clearly not necessary, then the least you can do is waive your fee for the repair inspection.”

    Me: “Let me call you right back. I’ll have to talk to my supervisor about this. I don’t know what he’ll say.”

    Realtor: “Okay. That will be fine.”

    (The realtor doesn’t know that I’m self employed. I wait ten minutes and call the realtor back.)

    Realtor: “Hello?”

    Me: “Hello. I just spoke to my supervisor and he got mad as h***. I argued on your behalf and he finally agreed to a 50 percent discount on the fee. This is the best I can do. He’s really upset with me.”

    Realtor: “A 50 percent discount? Okay. That will be fine.”

    (The realtor and seller were good to their word and quickly had the railings installed. On the invoice to the mortgage company, I charged full fee, but wrote in blue ink, ‘This fee represents a 50 per cent discount.’ I later did several more appraisals for that realtor. He thought he had gotten the best of me!)

    Window Pains

    | MA, USA | Crazy Requests, Home Improvement

    (A tenant in an office building calls the property management office. It’s autumn, and a bit chilly outside. Not every office in this building has a window, but hers does. Tenants pay more for the larger suites with windows.)

    Tenant: “Ever since the heat came on last week, my office has been stifling! Can’t the maintenance do anything?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, the office suites do not have individual heat controls. However, I can put in a ticket for maintenance to come and adjust your overhead vent so you don’t have as much warm air coming in.”

    Tenant: “Well how long will that be? I’m dying in here!”

    Me: “Maintenance is usually able to complete their tickets in a day or two.”

    Tenant: “What? He can’t come today? This is completely ridiculous! How do you expect me to work, or see clients? I’m sweating!”

    Me: “Well, in the meantime, you could certainly crack a window. It’s nice and cool outside.”

    Tenant: “THAT’S NOT WHAT I PAY FOR!”

    America’s Favorite Pastime

    | Bloomington, IN, USA | School

    (I’m a leasing agent for a local management company. A large percentage of our leasees are college students. I am showing a home to 5 students. On the second floor, there are two bathrooms back to back.)

    Me: “Here’s the 2nd bathroom.”

    Student: “Can we knock the wall down between the two bathrooms?”

    Me: “Um, no. I can tell you now that the owner will not do that.”

    Student: “Aww, come on. You should at least ask!”

    Me: “Why do you want to knock down the wall anyway?”

    Student: “So we can do GROUP POOP!”

    You’d Better Throw In The Cars, Too

    | Kansas City, MO, USA |

    Me: “Thank you for calling **** Realtors, this is ****, how may I help you?”

    Customer: “Hi, I’m interested in 734 **** Street. Could you tell me more information about it?”

    Me: “You must mean 732 **** Street?”

    Customer: “No, 734.”

    Me: “Does the house have a sign in the yard that says **** Realtors?”

    Customer: “No, but the one next door does. I figured I’d just call you guys since you sell houses.”

    Me: “Has it occurred to you that somebody probably lives in 734 **** Street?”

    Customer: “Well, yeah, but can’t you just, like…give it to me?”

    Me: “You want me to call the family and tell them that they have to leave their house because I’m selling it to you?”

    Customer: “Yeah, that would be good. And can I move in by Thursday? I’m all packed.”

    (It took a good 15 minutes to explain to him that I couldn’t just sell random peoples’ homes.)

    All Scrooged Up

    | Milwaukee, WI, USA | Top

    (My boss is a realtor; she has sign toppers for various occasions. This one happened to be for the Christmas season: “Home for the Holidays”.)

    Customer: “I’m calling about the ‘Home for the Holidays’ house.”

    Me: “Sure, what’s the address?”

    (She reads it to me.)

    Me: “Okay, how can I help you?”

    Customer: “When can I move in?”

    Me: “Excuse me? I’m sorry–do you mean you want to write an offer for the house?”

    Customer: “No, it says ‘Home for the Holidays.’ I want to move in before Christmas.”

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry. We’re not giving the house away, we’re selling it.”

    Customer: “Well I can’t afford a house!” *click*