By K.B. Sherman
Over the last month, I have been sharing my three-part story, “How I became a displaced person – an adventure in realty.”
The adventure concludes with ?
PART THREE: THE BOOM DROPS
SEPTEMBER 12: my wife and I go to check on the condition of the house we are buying; find that not only have sellers done none of the repairs required by the P&S, but have taken refrigerator to be?? included in the sale price of the house; house is also unlocked and has been vandalized; living room floor has been burnt by squatters
SEPTEMBER 16: after a weekend of frantic repair and cleaning the new house has been put in pretty good shape
SEPTEMBER 17: movers arrive at our home and pack all our household belongings in preparation for the move tomorrow
* all our goods are loaded onto two moving vans in preparation for ?the drive to our new house
* phone rings — it is the lawyer; our new house is in foreclosure, since owner has made no payments since last year,? and is thus $ 21,000 behind in his mortgage; therefore, we cannot ????pass papers for agreed-upon sale price and thus have no place to which to move
SEPTEMBER 18 (later):
* because we have a number of pets we cannot rent a place to live ?until other arrangements can be made; all our possessions are put ?into indefinite storage; my wife is forced to take our animals and ?hurriedly move-into her parents’ unheated summer cottage near the ?New Hampshire border; in order for me to be able to continue to commute to work I have to move in with my ?mother-in-law and start bunking on the floor; sleep is made doubly difficult because each night I am kept awake fantasizing about ?what I will do to the realtor, lawyer, and seller …
It is now a number of years since the beginning of Our Adventure in Equity — an event which puts into a much more favorable light the time my appendix ruptured and almost killed me. Yes, we finally managed to sell our house in the “seller's market” — after months of the most exquisite agony; at the expense of over $ 19,000 in direct closing costs, legal expenses, short-term loan ?interest, ?well pumps, and sales commissions; and at the cost of? having been ??conditioned to scream in terror every time the phone rings. And yes, we did find another house to buy and did move in — three months after all goods were taken to the warehouse for ?indefinite storage; three months after my wife and I were forced ?to separate and (respectively) live out in the woods and sleep on ?floors.
I also sought some sort of justice, but justice was not to be had. The Massachusetts Bar Association could find nothing improper in the actions of the seller's lawyer; the Realty Licensing Board could find nothing improper in the actions of the realtor; and the seller — involved in all sorts of self-generated bankruptcy and divorce proceedings — was a very poor target for litigation. Justice delayed is not only justice denied, it is justice beaten and left for dead.
But I really don’t mind talking about it. In fact, if you’d like to ask me any questions, I’d be glad to respond. I’m easy to find. I drive the car with the old bumper sticker that reads:
MY OTHER STUFF IS STILL IN STORAGE.