Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The opposite of closed is.... angry

Yet again, we did not close on the old house today. As frustrating as that fact is all on its own, what truly makes me angry about the situation is the way it unfolded. As you know by now, today was to be our third attempt at closing. The first delay was at the request of the buyer, but it came several days before the closing date, so that was workable. The second time, it all came down after 9:30 PM the night before due to a piece of paperwork requested by the lender. It then had to be sent to the underwriter, so we were delayed by a few days.

Today, I thought we were in the clear. When the phone rang at 8:30 AM this morning, I thought that was it. No, it was just our agent letting us know that the buyer had done their run through this morning and everything was good as far as we (buyers and sellers) all knew. By Noon, no additional phone calls had come, and I had finally dared to believe that we would actually be closing at 2PM. Perhaps that was the problem.

We left at 12:30. I had had a terrible morning at work (two big (and already late) projects fall down and go boom), but I was ready to shake it off by signing the papers. At least something good would come out of my day. We stopped by Arby's for lunch (I had not been able to eat with my insane morning), since it was on the path between the house and the lawyer's office. We had just finished ordering when my phone rang. It was 12:40.

Today's story is that the underwriter is requesting an explanation of something (I'm being deliberately vague; we do know the issue). I have two HUGE issues with this. #1: Clearly, the underwriters had not yet completed the paperwork. Even if the buyer had been able to provide the requested documents immediately upon request (which was not possible) and the underwriters had instantly sent the papers to the lawyers, we *still* would not have been able to close at 2 PM, because the lawyers would not have had time to review the papers. (You may recall that closing on our new house was delayed by 2 hours for similar reasons.) #2: How is it that the underwriters did not know/realize that the existing documentation was unacceptable until 90 MINUTES prior to closing?! Either they did know and didn't speak up, or they didn't bother to check until the last minute. Neither is acceptable. In fact, it is completely unprofessional and disrespectful of everyone's time. What if we all punched a clock? What if our managers were not as understanding and flexible as they are? The process of buying/selling a house should not put your *job* at risk. (What do the lenders think would happen to the mortgage payments then!)

I cannot recall the last time I saw my husband flush red with anger from chin to hairline. It has been several years. I don't even want to imagine the color of my own face; something akin to "lobster," I imagine. A blood pressure check on either of us at that moment likely would have landed us in the hospital. I flatly told our agent that until she could personally confirm directly with the lawyer that the papers were in hand, in order, and ready to be signed, we would NOT be leaving work. If that means they end up having to wait for us to arrive, then that's what it means. We are tentatively scheduled for 2 PM tomorrow (gee, where have I heard that before).

I know I said it yesterday, but I made the mistake of believing 2 hours before it actually happened. Tomorrow, even if we walk in the door and sit down at the table with pen in hand, I absolutely will not believe it until we walk out the door with signed papers and a check.

Currently feeling: seriously ticked off


  1. I'm so sorry Erin - what a huge ordeal. Sounds like it is mostly the lenders to blame so you cannot even bawl out your agent or the buyers. ugh! When we closed on our first house we had issues with the lenders playing these kind of games too, we closed on our 2nd closing date, but not until after much nail biting and a last minute pull-through after waiting at the closing site for several hours with a very bored 6 yr old (Alex). No fun. I'm crossing everything for you that this is really it this time and you are all closed by this time tomorrow!

  2. Oh my goodness! I'd be beyond ticked, too. I'll think good thoughts for you that all goes according to plan today. Meanwhile, chocolate?

  3. Most likely the lender didn't look at the paperwork until the last minute. And I'm sure the realtors and the attorneys were pressuring them to proceed anyway.

    The challenge is you've got three groups fighting to drive the closing date as early as possible. The realtor wants his/her commission, the attorneys have no sense of urgency and the lender is swamped. The end result is frustration for you and the buyer.

    Hang in there.


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