A hard lesson is learned in one bidding ‘war’

The living room of the apartment that "Jane" and "Jill" lost.

Call them Jane and Jill, clients of mine who searched on their own for many months.  Owners of a weekend place in the Berkshires, they decided it was time to move from their Manhattan rental to an apartment on the Upper East Side.

Finally, the couple found a co-op they loved, even speaking at length with the listing broker to the extent that they tried out a verbal offer on her.  It was only afterward that they decided to bring me into the picture, and their timing was not advantageous.

After calling me, they e-mailed the broker – call her Joy – and let her know that I would be representing them. Of course, that meant that the broker would have to split her commission with me, rather than keeping the whole thing (minus her brokerage firm’s take).

The following Sunday I visited Joy’s open house, told her my name and received neither a welcoming smile or even acknowledgment that she knew why I was there.  In fact, as I left, I asked her if she understood who I was.  “Yes,” she replied icily.  And not another word.

Now that I have that off my chest – though I don’t believe it’s incidental – let me tell you that the one-bedroom apartment with slim views of the East River from the ninth floor is lovely with pleasant kitchen and well-proportioned rooms.

Joy originally listed it exactly a year ago for $469,000.  In April, she dropped the price to $445,000 and raised it to $449,000 in June.  (Think about that for minute.)  In October, the co-op went into contract, but the unit came back on the market in November for $449,000.  In December, the price went down again, to $429,000. Continue reading