A Firsthand Story on a Home Purchase from a Divorcing Seller

Early in my real estate career, I was working with a nice young couple who were  looking for a move-up home. I had their starter under contract and we found a spacious contemporary in an area they loved. I still remember that first walk through; it had everything they wanted, like a first floor master bedroom, a large level yard, roomy kitchen, and plenty of other bells and whistles.

As we walked through we noticed that the seller was on the phone in the kitchen, visibly upset as she complained to the person on the line. We then walked though the den on the first floor. It was devoid of any furniture, and the built in shelves were empty. When we got to the master bedroom, one of the walk in closets was empty.

A light bulb went off in my head. This was a divorce situation, and they were doing a poor job of concealing it. We made an offer of tens of thousands less than we might have offered because we sensed that we had leverage. The seller had to come to the closing with money just to pay off their mortgage. We ate their lunch.

It didn’t have to be that way, of course, but the people selling the house did such a bad job of masking their problems that the buyer naturally pressed their advantage. The hit to the sellers was about 15% of the cost of the home- it was devastating.

From that experience forward, I made it my job to ensure that any client of mine that was selling their home in a divorce would not be exposed to the same liability.

-J Philip Faranda, Broker-owner


J. Philip Real Estate brokers real estate transactions in divorce situations throughout New York and Connecticut. If you need to sell your home due to a divorce in Westchester, Fairfield, Long Island or the Hudson Valley, we are the real estate specialist you have been looking for. Contact us for more information
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