Weird house buying experience

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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

researcher wrote:
starguru wrote:See above. Its not the $1k, its the question of are we going to be paying for their mistakes forward.
Given your very strong belief that a $100 discrepancy (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected) is an indication that you will be "paying for their mistakes going forward", then you definitely need to end your relationship with the builder immediately.

There will be many other issues that will come up during the building process, costing much more than $100, that you will perceive as the builder trying to screw you. I see nothing good coming from proceeding with this build.
Just curious, what other issues do you see arising that would cost more that we would be obligated to pursue?
letsgobobby
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by letsgobobby »

starguru wrote:
researcher wrote:
starguru wrote:See above. Its not the $1k, its the question of are we going to be paying for their mistakes forward.
Given your very strong belief that a $100 discrepancy (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected) is an indication that you will be "paying for their mistakes going forward", then you definitely need to end your relationship with the builder immediately.

There will be many other issues that will come up during the building process, costing much more than $100, that you will perceive as the builder trying to screw you. I see nothing good coming from proceeding with this build.
Just curious, what other issues do you see arising that would cost more that we would be obligated to pursue?
cost and time overruns are a fact of life with new construction. It could be anything. It's unpredictable. It seems you do not like that reality and people are advising you save yourself the hassle now.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

neilpilot wrote:If the OP can make this much of an issue out of $100 on a $1,000,000 purchase, then I suggest they probably could not handle the inevitable issues of home construction. I suggest you drop the idea of having a new home built, and purchase from existing inventory. You don't have the mindset to go through new home construction.
First it's 1000, second to what issues do you refer? And pleas e don't make it personal. You don't know anything about us other other than that we expect legal contracts to be accurate.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

letsgobobby wrote:
starguru wrote:
researcher wrote:
starguru wrote:See above. Its not the $1k, its the question of are we going to be paying for their mistakes forward.
Given your very strong belief that a $100 discrepancy (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected) is an indication that you will be "paying for their mistakes going forward", then you definitely need to end your relationship with the builder immediately.

There will be many other issues that will come up during the building process, costing much more than $100, that you will perceive as the builder trying to screw you. I see nothing good coming from proceeding with this build.
Just curious, what other issues do you see arising that would cost more that we would be obligated to pursue?
cost and time overruns are a fact of life with new construction. It could be anything. It's unpredictable. It seems you do not like that reality and people are advising you save yourself the hassle now.
Can you give me an example? As I understand it the agree upon price is the price. I'm not seeing how the builder could demand more money if we don't change any options.
neilpilot
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by neilpilot »

starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:If the OP can make this much of an issue out of $100 on a $1,000,000 purchase, then I suggest they probably could not handle the inevitable issues of home construction. I suggest you drop the idea of having a new home built, and purchase from existing inventory. You don't have the mindset to go through new home construction.
First it's 1000, second to what issues do you refer? And pleas e don't make it personal. You don't know anything about us other other than that we expect legal contracts to be accurate.
I figured $100 based on what you and others have posted; if the difference is actually $1k then may math skills are lacking. I don't know what "issues" you will run into, but others have discovered things such as "gutters are extra" to "you expected landscaping?". It's almost unheard of to get through new residential construction without change ordered that cost extra.
autopeep
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by autopeep »

Do you really think that the contract protects you from unforeseeable cost overruns? Not an expert but my understanding of construction is that the price is never the price.
DrDubious
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by DrDubious »

If I were you I would not want to do business with the builder, but not because he is dishonest or incompetent, but because he is probably really irritated with you and the froth you have worked yourself into over a minuscule amount of money.

Either bail out now, or give the poor guy a fruit basket and a nice note and enjoy your new house.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

neilpilot wrote:
starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:If the OP can make this much of an issue out of $100 on a $1,000,000 purchase, then I suggest they probably could not handle the inevitable issues of home construction. I suggest you drop the idea of having a new home built, and purchase from existing inventory. You don't have the mindset to go through new home construction.
First it's 1000, second to what issues do you refer? And pleas e don't make it personal. You don't know anything about us other other than that we expect legal contracts to be accurate.
I figured $100 based on "the real configured price was $49.9k" and "Is it reasonable to expect the final price to be adjusted to $47.9k", so if the difference is actually $1k then may math skills are lacking. I don't know what "issues" you will run into, but others have discovered things such as "gutters are extra" to "you expected landscaping?". It's almost unheard of to get through new residential construction without change ordered that cost extra.
Read the last paragraph of the OP. It's almost as if you were rushing to throw an insult instead of understanding the actual problem.

We understand that landscaping is extra. Gutters are required by code. Is there an actual real example of something that could come up that we would be required to have and pay for? We understand we will want to add things on, but are prepared to pay for that. That's we we negotiated the discount, on the assumption that we will end up adding some things. I'm just confused as to whether there things we have no choice on or if people just want to make comments about our mentality thru impossible situations.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

autopeep wrote:Do you really think that the contract protects you from unforeseeable cost overruns? Not an expert but my understanding of construction is that the price is never the price.
Yes I do. The contract is we give them a set amount of money and they give us a house. Unless there is some sort of clause that mentions unforeseen scenarios, but I'm pretty sure there is not. Like I mentioned this is a big builder and they build a lot of homes. I'm fairly confident they have all that stuff priced in.
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reriodan
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by reriodan »

How can anyone even know the value of a ~ million dollar house within the margin of 1k?
WL2034
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by WL2034 »

starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:
starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:If the OP can make this much of an issue out of $100 on a $1,000,000 purchase, then I suggest they probably could not handle the inevitable issues of home construction. I suggest you drop the idea of having a new home built, and purchase from existing inventory. You don't have the mindset to go through new home construction.
First it's 1000, second to what issues do you refer? And pleas e don't make it personal. You don't know anything about us other other than that we expect legal contracts to be accurate.
I figured $100 based on "the real configured price was $49.9k" and "Is it reasonable to expect the final price to be adjusted to $47.9k", so if the difference is actually $1k then may math skills are lacking. I don't know what "issues" you will run into, but others have discovered things such as "gutters are extra" to "you expected landscaping?". It's almost unheard of to get through new residential construction without change ordered that cost extra.
Read the last paragraph of the OP. It's almost as if you were rushing to throw an insult instead of understanding the actual problem.
Your OP is a bit confusing, TBH. You spend 3 paragraphs framing the issue as $100 on $50k before using one line at the end to say, "actually, it's $1k on $1M+." I think it would be clear if you just used the actual numbers, exclusively. I think the vast majority of posters here can understand $1k on $1M+ just as easily as $100 on $50k (which are not the same by ratio, anyway).

I would be slightly perturbed if I were you. I wouldn't throw the deal away, unless I were unhappy about other aspects. I would lean on the builder to meet me halfway. Or perhaps just voice your displeasure and use this instance as leverage for future issues that arise.

I think part of the reason the majority don't agree with you is that it's not as if you are buying something at Wal-Mart (or even a car at a dealership) and they are charging you over MSRP. It's a new home build. They can charge whatever the market will pay. So if they print out an options sheet that says $800k but there is another bidder willing to pay $850k, they will sell it for $850k. So when you agree to pay $x.xM for the house, then see a different price sheet and feel strongly that you should pay ($x.xM - $1k), that is much more a matter of opinion compared to if Wal-Mart was trying to charge you $4 for a gallon of milk with a sticker price of $3. I'm not saying your opinion is necessarily wrong, but it's not just a matter of fact. In my opinion. :mrgreen:
Topic Author
starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

WL2034 wrote:
starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:
starguru wrote:
neilpilot wrote:If the OP can make this much of an issue out of $100 on a $1,000,000 purchase, then I suggest they probably could not handle the inevitable issues of home construction. I suggest you drop the idea of having a new home built, and purchase from existing inventory. You don't have the mindset to go through new home construction.
First it's 1000, second to what issues do you refer? And pleas e don't make it personal. You don't know anything about us other other than that we expect legal contracts to be accurate.
I figured $100 based on "the real configured price was $49.9k" and "Is it reasonable to expect the final price to be adjusted to $47.9k", so if the difference is actually $1k then may math skills are lacking. I don't know what "issues" you will run into, but others have discovered things such as "gutters are extra" to "you expected landscaping?". It's almost unheard of to get through new residential construction without change ordered that cost extra.
Read the last paragraph of the OP. It's almost as if you were rushing to throw an insult instead of understanding the actual problem.
Your OP is a bit confusing, TBH. You spend 3 paragraphs framing the issue as $100 on $50k before using one line at the end to say, "actually, it's $1k on $1M+." I think it would be clear if you just used the actual numbers, exclusively. I think the vast majority of posters here can understand $1k on $1M+ just as easily as $100 on $50k (which are not the same by ratio, anyway).

I would be slightly perturbed if I were you. I wouldn't throw the deal away, unless I were unhappy about other aspects. I would lean on the builder to meet me halfway. Or perhaps just voice your displeasure and use this instance as leverage for future issues that arise.

I think part of the reason the majority don't agree with you is that it's not as if you are buying something at Wal-Mart (or even a car at a dealership) and they are charging you over MSRP. It's a new home build. They can charge whatever the market will pay. So if they print out an options sheet that says $800k but there is another bidder willing to pay $850k, they will sell it for $850k. So when you agree to pay $x.xM for the house, then see a different price sheet and feel strongly that you should pay ($x.xM - $1k), that is much more a matter of opinion compared to if Wal-Mart was trying to charge you $4 for a gallon of milk with a sticker price of $3. I'm not saying your opinion is necessarily wrong, but it's not just a matter of fact. In my opinion. :mrgreen:
Thank you for a reasonable opinion. Apologies if the OP was confusing. We are a bit wary to see them so dug in on what is clearly their mistake. They also told us we get x recessed lights, what if they really meant x-10 and then expect us to pay for the difference....we r now uncertain of how those scenarios would play out. To be clear we would expect them to give us what they told us. From what I'm reading above , people in this thread would probably expect us to just pay for that too.
staythecourse
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by staythecourse »

We built a custom built home with a builder last year and must say these are the most ANNOYING situations that arise. No offense to anyone in the build field on this board, but they have to be the WORST folks I have seen when it comes to running/ understanding numbers. Mine would argue over a $200 something, but give away 1000's (literally) in free upgrades.

I, finally come to assume, they just have no clue how to run a business. The left hand NEVER understands what the right hand is doing. I had issues where I would email them the contract in response and quote the page number and paragraph and they still didn't understand. Other times they would just give away stuff that wasn't even in the contract for free.

I started and finished building a house and still don't understand what makes them tick.

Good luck.
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dbr
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by dbr »

reriodan wrote:How can anyone even know the value of a ~ million dollar house within the margin of 1k?
Right. The consternation arises from framing the negotiation as "getting" $2.0K and finding that cut to $1.9K combined with finding the builder to be apparently intransigent with regard to "correcting" the issue, which originated in a mistake by the builder. What did the builder actually say as to why he wouldn't simply correct the cost? It is easy to frame things so that a negligible issue becomes a zero tolerance issue of character. A lot of negotiation seems to be framed not on what the outcome is (a $1,000,000 house for $998,100) but on what one "got" and on one's perception of how the other party does business. Again what did the builder say about why not adjust the price? Is there a pile of paper work already written up for what everyone thought was the final price and you want to change the numbers by $100? Did you both already sign a contract and now you want all new paperwork? I think it makes a difference. Is the problem that builder does not think this issue is worth even five minutes on the telephone talking about it? Is there a background here of a lot of negotiating over $1000 here and $1000 there?
Last edited by dbr on Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
WL2034
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by WL2034 »

starguru wrote:
Thank you for a reasonable opinion. Apologies if the OP was confusing. We are a bit wary to see them so dug in on what is clearly their mistake. They also told us we get x recessed lights, what if they really meant x-10 and then expect us to pay for the difference....we r now uncertain of how those scenarios would play out. To be clear we would expect them to give us what they told us. From what I'm reading above , people in this thread would probably expect us to just pay for that too.

Full disclosure, I've never bought a house -- and I've certainly never built a new house. I love to negotiate, and I would not be afraid to use this instance to try to pay a lower price. However, I think what people who have been through this process are suggesting is that you don't want to negotiate in a really hard-nosed way right now because this isn't a one time transaction. It's a relationship. So if you were buying a new car, getting the absolute lowest price and making the car salesman hate you is fine. But if you are going to have a months-long relationship as this builder constructs your new home, you probably don't want them to hate you the entire time over a very small % of the purchase price. So whatever you decide to do, I would do it nicely (unless you decide to walk away and will never use them in the future).
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

dbr wrote:
reriodan wrote:How can anyone even know the value of a ~ million dollar house within the margin of 1k?
Right. The consternation arises from framing the negotiation as "getting" $2.0K and finding that cut to $1.9K combined with finding the builder to be apparently intransigent with regard to "correcting" the issue, which originated in a mistake by the builder. What did the builder actually say as to why he wouldn't simply correct the cost? It is easy to frame things so that a negligible issue becomes a zero tolerance issue of character. A lot of negotiation seems to be framed not on what the outcome is (a $1,000,000 house for $998,100) but on what one "got" and on one's perception of how the other party does business. Again what did the builder say about why not adjust the price? Is there a pile of paper work already written up for what everyone thought was the final price and you want to change the numbers by $100? Did you both already sign a contract and now you want all new paperwork? I think it makes a difference. Is the problem that builder does not think this issue is worth even five minutes on the telephone talking about it? Is there a background here of a lot of negotiating over $1000 here and $1000 there?
So we priced out the house with our desired options. We then offered a contract that included the list of options and our offer. Our offer price was informed by their trying to sell the model in the community at a discount(different house from the one we want to buy). We took that discount and added a little. If they can offer that discount on the model surely they can offer it to us. Our paperwork contained a discount line item of let's say 50k off the price. They then countered and we countered the counter. We reached an agreement. When the formal contract came back, we noticed one line item was removed from the list of options we had selected. Instead of giving us the discount on our paperwork they adjusted the discount to be lower, since the price of the home was lower. We said wait a minute, we offered that price under the assumption that the invoice was accurate. If the actual invoice is less by the amount of that item we expect you to apply our discount to the real price.

From what I understand they simply won't give us the credit to the price or as a credit to future add ones. They do not view the inaccurate pricing we negotiated on as making any difference.
Mudpuppy
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by Mudpuppy »

starguru wrote:
NotWhoYouThink wrote:Sure words mean something. But that's now what negotiation is about. You are negotiating based on what the house is worth to you, regardless of the cost. What do you care about someone else's cost? Once you negotiate a price, are you going to pay more because he experiences an overrun? Of course not, you have an agreed-to price. Is he going to reduce your price because he gets a bargain on some materials? Of course not, he has an agreed-to price.

You pay what it is worth to you to get something, or you decide to walk away. He sells at a price that gives him an acceptable profit, or else he walks away. Cost, or in this case list price (which is somewhat arbitrary anyway) has little to do with it.

You may not look at it this way, but many people do, and it's a good idea for you to learn that other people have a different way of looking at negotiations. And in your example, yes. If you are willing to pay $850K for the house, why would they not let you? Is it worth that much to you or not?
Im sorry, but no. This is a legal contract we are talking about. In this example, we offer 850 *based on the belief that the cost is 900k*. We negotiated a 50k discount. If we then find out the cost is really 800k, we want our 50k discount either way. I appreciate your opinion, but I think it is fundamentally flawed. You are not going to convince me; we don't need to keep going.
If this is a legal contract, what does your lawyer say about its enforceability? Words can have many meanings, which is why lawyers get paid the big bucks to develop contracts that are as unambiguous as humanly possible (although not completely so, hence the root of many civil court cases about contract enforcement). Your interpretation of a phrase and the legal interpretation of a phrase are two completely separate items.

So consult a lawyer if you want to be throwing around the phrase "legal contracts" to make sure you have the enforceability you think you have. You may indeed have none at all, in which case, it becomes an item for negotiation again.

I'd also recommend following the above advice about learning when to put aside emotion in this process. Emotions are not your friend during car buying, house buying, jewelry buying, and other large purchases.
dbr
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by dbr »

starguru wrote: So we priced out the house with our desired options. We then offered a contract that included the list of options and our offer. Our offer price was informed by their trying to sell the model in the community at a discount(different house from the one we want to buy). We took that discount and added a little. If they can offer that discount on the model surely they can offer it to us. Our paperwork contained a discount line item of let's say 50k off the price. They then countered and we countered the counter. We reached an agreement. When the formal contract came back, we noticed one line item was removed from the list of options we had selected. Instead of giving us the discount on our paperwork they adjusted the discount to be lower, since the price of the home was lower. We said wait a minute, we offered that price under the assumption that the invoice was accurate. If the actual invoice is less by the amount of that item we expect you to apply our discount to the real price.

From what I understand they simply won't give us the credit to the price or as a credit to future add ones. They do not view the inaccurate pricing we negotiated on as making any difference.
So my understanding is that in the end you all agreed to a house priced with two golden winchers by mistake. They found their mistake and deleted one of the golden winchers but they didn't reduce the price by the $100 cost of one wincher.

I guess if you find this upsetting and they are intransigent, then you walk on the deal. I imagine it has not occurred to them in the slightest that this is about how much discount you are getting but rather that the price is right, one wincher, two winchers, whatever. Maybe you should instead ask them for another wincher, maybe left in a box in the garage. I would have just said that obviously the house is supposed to have one wincher and the price is fine at what we agreed to and never brought it up. The last thing you want is to go ahead with the house under the cloud of a poisoned relationship over nothing.
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randomizer
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by randomizer »

starguru wrote:
Man I should go into sales....
Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
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letsgobobby
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by letsgobobby »

randomizer wrote:
starguru wrote:
Man I should go into sales....
Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
samsmith
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by samsmith »

My two cents.
First from reading this post, I don't think dbr has the exact scenario right when he says:
So my understanding is that in the end you all agreed to a house priced with two golden winchers by mistake. They found their mistake and deleted one of the golden winchers but they didn't reduce the price by the $100 cost of one wincher.
I think the situation is they agreed on a house with two golden winchers for a price of "x' for the base house, "y" for the two golden winches (which the original posters explains comes from some type of spec sheet or invoice), and a discount of "z" that they negotiated for the winches. So the agreed on price was to be AGREED PRICE = x + y -z. However, when the contract arrived the builder had apparently now included one of the winches in the base price of the house. Thus y was now reduced by $1000 since one of the winches is included in the base price. The builder also reduced z, the discount by the same $1000. So the contract is now: x+ (y-$1000) - (z-$1000) = AGREED PRICE. SO the OP is still getting the two golden winchers for the exact agreed upon price. The builder did not change the agreed upon price or try to remove something that he agreed to. The contract now has a lower discount, because the builder has now included one of the "extras" in base price. That is what the OP can't seem to accept.

As others have suggested, this is a long term relationship you will need with builder and I would want to start off with a positive relationship . If the OP cant get there - he should walk away for both his AND the builder's sake. Having built a house and worked with a builder, there will be things that the OP will likely want to change as the house goes up. In fact, that is one of the advantages of building - you might be able to tweak some things to your liking. Things that you might want to tweak as you see your house taking shape could include: more electric outlets in some rooms, more light switches to turn lights on and off in bedrooms and hallways, upgraded lights or plumbing fixtures, more co-axial cable or ethernet wiring, upgraded paint, enhanced floor finishes, tweaking wall placements, etc.

It would seem to me that you want a positive relationship with your builder. If you feel "cheated" (as you do), before you start, then you likely would be better off starting afresh.
dbr
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by dbr »

I should correct a miss-spelling and mention of the correct object :oops: I meant to refer to a gold buckskin whincher, common in any household, as here: http://josephperry.net/rootabaga/03-01blixiebimber.html
bluebolt
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by bluebolt »

I bought a place while it was under construction and we were shown all the tiles, countertops & finishes.

When we did our walkthrough, the bathroom tile was solid instead of the patterned tile they originally showed us. The kitchen island countertop was a single level instead of being two levels. And, there was no shower door on the shower as was shown in the plans.

They agreed to install a shower door, but wouldn't budge on the tile or island.

Our only choice would have been to sue, which didn't seem worth it since we may not have been successful. It's not like our house wasn't fully functional, just that they cheaped out when it came to a few of the finishes.

In the end, it was a much better idea to let it go, since those items only marginally impacted our overall experience.
Elena
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by Elena »

cheese_breath wrote:Why did you start this thread? Your OP said you were seeking advice from Internet strangers, but it appears you already have your mind made up. By my last count you've made eleven posts including the original, and six of them were arguing with advice you received.
+1
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

Elena wrote:
cheese_breath wrote:Why did you start this thread? Your OP said you were seeking advice from Internet strangers, but it appears you already have your mind made up. By my last count you've made eleven posts including the original, and six of them were arguing with advice you received.
+1
Sorry was on a plane. I wanted to get a sense of what people would do on this scenario. It seems most would just go forward and move on. Thats fine. I'm a little amused that people supposedly interested in saving money would roll over so easily, but hey that's fine. I'm also not convinced people would not feel that were taken advantage of in a similar situation. In this case the amount is relatively small but no one is saying they would be ok with the car buying scenario I outlined, which is equivalent except in magnitude. I'm a bit surprised by those who act as if wenare being unreasonable for wanting accurate pricing and the discount applied to the correct amount, by hey it's the internet, the advice is free, and you get what you pay for.

In any event i pretty much got what i needed. Some have pointed out that's it's pretty much a question of whether we want to overlook it and just move forward with it if we really want the house. That's basically it.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

samsmith wrote:My two cents.
First from reading this post, I don't think dbr has the exact scenario right when he says:
So my understanding is that in the end you all agreed to a house priced with two golden winchers by mistake. They found their mistake and deleted one of the golden winchers but they didn't reduce the price by the $100 cost of one wincher.
I think the situation is they agreed on a house with two golden winchers for a price of "x' for the base house, "y" for the two golden winches (which the original posters explains comes from some type of spec sheet or invoice), and a discount of "z" that they negotiated for the winches. So the agreed on price was to be AGREED PRICE = x + y -z. However, when the contract arrived the builder had apparently now included one of the winches in the base price of the house. Thus y was now reduced by $1000 since one of the winches is included in the base price. The builder also reduced z, the discount by the same $1000. So the contract is now: x+ (y-$1000) - (z-$1000) = AGREED PRICE. SO the OP is still getting the two golden winchers for the exact agreed upon price. The builder did not change the agreed upon price or try to remove something that he agreed to. The contract now has a lower discount, because the builder has now included one of the "extras" in base price. That is what the OP can't seem to accept.

As others have suggested, this is a long term relationship you will need with builder and I would want to start off with a positive relationship . If the OP cant get there - he should walk away for both his AND the builder's sake. Having built a house and worked with a builder, there will be things that the OP will likely want to change as the house goes up. In fact, that is one of the advantages of building - you might be able to tweak some things to your liking. Things that you might want to tweak as you see your house taking shape could include: more electric outlets in some rooms, more light switches to turn lights on and off in bedrooms and hallways, upgraded lights or plumbing fixtures, more co-axial cable or ethernet wiring, upgraded paint, enhanced floor finishes, tweaking wall placements, etc.

It would seem to me that you want a positive relationship with your builder. If you feel "cheated" (as you do), before you start, then you likely would be better off starting afresh.

Pretty accurate. It's the Z-1000 that we r not happy with since we carefully picked the Z based on a discount offered on another home.

Of course we r going to have to upgrade more once we get into the nonstructural details. We are fully prepelared to pay for things we add; we don't expect to get anything for free. We DO expect to have accurate pricing put in front of us when we are making decisions.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by ResearchMed »

starguru wrote:
samsmith wrote:My two cents.
First from reading this post, I don't think dbr has the exact scenario right when he says:
So my understanding is that in the end you all agreed to a house priced with two golden winchers by mistake. They found their mistake and deleted one of the golden winchers but they didn't reduce the price by the $100 cost of one wincher.
I think the situation is they agreed on a house with two golden winchers for a price of "x' for the base house, "y" for the two golden winches (which the original posters explains comes from some type of spec sheet or invoice), and a discount of "z" that they negotiated for the winches. So the agreed on price was to be AGREED PRICE = x + y -z. However, when the contract arrived the builder had apparently now included one of the winches in the base price of the house. Thus y was now reduced by $1000 since one of the winches is included in the base price. The builder also reduced z, the discount by the same $1000. So the contract is now: x+ (y-$1000) - (z-$1000) = AGREED PRICE. SO the OP is still getting the two golden winchers for the exact agreed upon price. The builder did not change the agreed upon price or try to remove something that he agreed to. The contract now has a lower discount, because the builder has now included one of the "extras" in base price. That is what the OP can't seem to accept.

As others have suggested, this is a long term relationship you will need with builder and I would want to start off with a positive relationship . If the OP cant get there - he should walk away for both his AND the builder's sake. Having built a house and worked with a builder, there will be things that the OP will likely want to change as the house goes up. In fact, that is one of the advantages of building - you might be able to tweak some things to your liking. Things that you might want to tweak as you see your house taking shape could include: more electric outlets in some rooms, more light switches to turn lights on and off in bedrooms and hallways, upgraded lights or plumbing fixtures, more co-axial cable or ethernet wiring, upgraded paint, enhanced floor finishes, tweaking wall placements, etc.

It would seem to me that you want a positive relationship with your builder. If you feel "cheated" (as you do), before you start, then you likely would be better off starting afresh.

Pretty accurate. It's the Z-1000 that we r not happy with since we carefully picked the Z based on a discount offered on another home.

Of course we r going to have to upgrade more once we get into the nonstructural details. We are fully prepelared to pay for things we add; we don't expect to get anything for free. We DO expect to have accurate pricing put in front of us when we are making decisions.
"It's the Z-1000 that we r not happy with since we carefully picked the Z based on a discount offered on another home."

The identical item/finish could be discounted *very* differently in a different home with a variety of different costs.

Is this really the basis of your complaint?

RM
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by Pacific »

starguru wrote:
IngognitoUSA wrote:If you like the house, negotiate as much as you can and buy it. In the larger scheme of things it's not a lot of money and house you like are not easy to find.

If they don't budge on numbers then get other upgrades or landscaping thrown in. Might be easier for builder to do that.
We did ask for a credit instead and they refused.
Maybe they just decided that they do not like you or maybe your attitude and have decided they would rather not sell the house to you? Not meant to be snarky here.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

Pacific wrote:
starguru wrote:
IngognitoUSA wrote:If you like the house, negotiate as much as you can and buy it. In the larger scheme of things it's not a lot of money and house you like are not easy to find.

If they don't budge on numbers then get other upgrades or landscaping thrown in. Might be easier for builder to do that.
We did ask for a credit instead and they refused.
Maybe they just decided that they do not like you or maybe your attitude and have decided they would rather not sell the house to you? Not meant to be snarky here.
Unlikely the realtor is doing the talking.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

letsgobobby wrote:
randomizer wrote:
starguru wrote:
Man I should go into sales....
Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by cheese_breath »

starguru wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:
randomizer wrote:
starguru wrote:
Man I should go into sales....
Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
It probably says it's a sellers market, and they'll sell to someone else.
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

cheese_breath wrote:
starguru wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:
randomizer wrote:
starguru wrote:
Man I should go into sales....
Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
It probably says it's a sellers market, and they'll sell to someone else.
Yeah these lots have been around for close to two years, maybe more, and their model is significantly discounted. People aren't gobbling these things up.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by celia »

They gave you the price you wanted and now you're not happy with it? :oops:
starguru wrote:Then we find out that the pricing on the configured options was incorrect, and the real configured price was $49.9k (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected). Is it reasonable to expect the final price to be adjusted to $47.9k? We negotiated a 2k discount, not a 1.9k credit.
What if they found instead that the options you chose should have had a higher base price, say 50.1k? Would you expect to now pay 2k less than that? If you agreed on a specific dollar amount and it is in writing, that is what you both agreed to isn't it?

BTY, if you cancel and come back in a few months, not only would I expect the options to cost more, but also the base price for the house.

Now, what do you and your spouse want to do?
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

celia wrote:They gave you the price you wanted and now you're not happy with it? :oops:
Ok, answer the car analogy-riddle then. You want to buy a car. You add the "turbo engine" options. Salesperson says the base price is 10k + 1k for the engine. You negotiate a 1k discount for a final price of 10k. You then go to sign the paperwork and the turbo engine option is listed as costing $0; it's included by default and it was an error for the salesperson to tell you that option was $1k. Tell me honestly you are still happy paying 10k for that car since you are getting the price you wanted. Go ahead.
celia wrote:
starguru wrote:Then we find out that the pricing on the configured options was incorrect, and the real configured price was $49.9k (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected). Is it reasonable to expect the final price to be adjusted to $47.9k? We negotiated a 2k discount, not a 1.9k credit.
What if they found instead that the options you chose should have had a higher base price, say 50.1k? Would you expect to now pay 2k less than that? If you agreed on a specific dollar amount and it is in writing, that is what you both agreed to isn't it?

BTY, if you cancel and come back in a few months, not only would I expect the options to cost more, but also the base price for the house.

Now, what do you and your spouse want to do?
We are not sure what we want to do. But Im glad you brought up the scenario about what if the options we chose had a higher price than originally quoted. I mentioned before we have not had an accurate price sheet until after the negotiations concluded. More than once prices on some of our options have gone up due to errors on their agent's part, and we just accepted it. We only got wary after the options prices kept changing after we were done negotiating.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by celia »

starguru wrote:Ok, answer the car analogy-riddle then. You want to buy a car. You add the "turbo engine" options. Salesperson says the base price is 10k + 1k for the engine. You negotiate a 1k discount for a final price of 10k. You then go to sign the paperwork and the turbo engine option is listed as costing $0; it's included by default and it was an error for the salesperson to tell you that option was $1k. Tell me honestly you are still happy paying 10k for that car since you are getting the price you wanted. Go ahead.
I think it boils down to how you look at things. If my car with the turbo engine costs me $10k, then I assume I could have negotiated the car with the regular engine down also. I probably could have had it for a little over $9k. But I really want that turbo so I am happy with it for $10k. (It will make my Boglehead friends jealous. :D )

I also see it another way. We've bought things before for a "total price" with some specified options thrown in. I knew they were included in the price and didn't need a separate dollar price for them to be shown. Sometimes contracts are written that way. For example, sometimes a business will say they will cover the sales tax that day. They don't have to reverse engineer each person's bill to re-calculate each item's price and add the local sales tax rate to come up to the shelf price. They just charge you for the total of all the items. Of course, they still have to pay the state, so at the end of the day, they total that day's sales and calculate the sales tax for the day. But your receipt may show $0 on the tax line. But I know the state has to get something from this transaction.

Another example showing it is all a matter of how you look at it is that all (most?) of the Bogleheads see it differently than you. Here's an idea. Wait 24 hours and then ask your spouse (in a neutral way) how he/she sees it. Don't try to bring him/her to your side.

There's often more than one way to look at things.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by digarei »

starguru wrote: ...

I'm a bit surprised by those who act as if wenare being unreasonable for wanting accurate pricing and the discount applied to the correct amount, by hey it's the internet, the advice is free, and you get what you pay for.



Nice.

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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by yatesd »

starguru wrote:
researcher wrote:
starguru wrote:See above. Its not the $1k, its the question of are we going to be paying for their mistakes forward.
Given your very strong belief that a $100 discrepancy (one option that costed $100 was included as part of another option we selected) is an indication that you will be "paying for their mistakes going forward", then you definitely need to end your relationship with the builder immediately.

There will be many other issues that will come up during the building process, costing much more than $100, that you will perceive as the builder trying to screw you. I see nothing good coming from proceeding with this build.
Just curious, what other issues do you see arising that would cost more that we would be obligated to pursue?
Possibly everything...you think you negotiated. Ha!

You negotiated possibly 1,000 items and the house contains 10,000 items. Go ahead and "win" the argument...the builder will make it up somewhere else.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by why3not »

Kosmo wrote:. You negotiated a price to pay, not a price discount.
+1
Builder and you came to agreement to build house containing all of Y specs to price X.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by LiveSimple »

OP, if you want to enjoy your future home, just budget for 125% and be happy to pay the extras here and there.

There is no set price in these transactions, and you should be willing to pay or at atleast accept your perception, that you paid more.

If you want to cry for $1000 more in home construction, you will not enjoy the transactions and the home.

Last December, I helped a friend in your same situation, with the same thought, pay and move on and they are happy in their new home.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by LiveSimple »

OP, another way to be happy is consider your builder to this years charity organizations that you are donating. The few extra dollars consider as donations.

You will fell better and enjoy your home construction.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by researcher »

starguru wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
I think it says the salesperson is willing to let a PROBLEM BUYER walk away over .1% of the sales price.

If you are such a pain in the rear over a minor discrepancy at the very beginning of the process, the salesperson probably realizes that you will be a complete monster throughout the construction process.

It may not be worth their time dealing with someone like you.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by dbr »

why3not wrote:
Kosmo wrote:. You negotiated a price to pay, not a price discount.
+1
Builder and you came to agreement to build house containing all of Y specs to price X.
I also agree with this. It is a total non-issue.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by researcher »

starguru wrote:We are a bit wary to see them so dug in on what is clearly their mistake. They also told us we get x recessed lights, what if they really meant x-10 and then expect us to pay for the difference....we r now uncertain of how those scenarios would play out. To be clear we would expect them to give us what they told us. From what I'm reading above , people in this thread would probably expect us to just pay for that too.
You got all of the options you wanted at the price you wanted to pay.
Just because the builder made a slight tweak to one option package doesn't mean you are getting ripped off or that they made a mistake.

Building a $1M house is not like buying a toaster from Walmart. There are thousands of different variables that will go into your home and the pricing of these fluctuates. There is no way you are going to be able to account for all of these things, upfront, with a single "price sheet."

What happens when you start building and realize there is a single outlet in a hallway and you thought it should be a double outlet?
When a light is wired to a 2-way switch and you thought it should be a 3-way switch?
When a light fixture is installed with a clear glass shade and you thought it would be frosted glass?

You won't be able to account for the tens of thousands of variables that go into your house, and when this type of stuff comes up, what are you going to do?
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by somekevinguy »

I think I get it. As someone who also highly values "fairness," I might feel like the builder is being unfair and reneging on a previous commitment. However, as a dispassionate observer only hearing your side of the story thus far, I'd agree with the vast majority of the other BH'ers. It really doesn't sound like anyone is trying to cheat you and if the builder has been reasonable prior to this, I highly doubt this portends you having to eat every miscommunication or unanticipated issues that is sure to come as you progress. Taking a step back and looking at the big picture, it is a very minor setback that is probably not worth tanking an ongoing relationship over (nor losing out on a highly desirable home).

Like others,I would suggest trying to let go of this as much as possible- it seems that it is consuming a fair amount of your energy and causing undue stress. If you can't let go of it and believe, against the observations of most on this forum, that the builder either has cheated you, is incompetent, or can't be trusted moving forward, then I would walk away. If that is your mentality, I think it would probably be better for both parties to end the transaction now.

Anyhow, I hope you end up with a wonderful home, less road noise/better sleep, and less stress.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by letsgobobby »

somekevinguy wrote:I think I get it. As someone who also highly values "fairness," I might feel like the builder is being unfair and reneging on a previous commitment. However, as a dispassionate observer only hearing your side of the story thus far, I'd agree with the vast majority of the other BH'ers.
Has any respondent agreed with OP's position yet?
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

celia wrote:
starguru wrote:Ok, answer the car analogy-riddle then. You want to buy a car. You add the "turbo engine" options. Salesperson says the base price is 10k + 1k for the engine. You negotiate a 1k discount for a final price of 10k. You then go to sign the paperwork and the turbo engine option is listed as costing $0; it's included by default and it was an error for the salesperson to tell you that option was $1k. Tell me honestly you are still happy paying 10k for that car since you are getting the price you wanted. Go ahead.
I think it boils down to how you look at things. If my car with the turbo engine costs me $10k, then I assume I could have negotiated the car with the regular engine down also. I probably could have had it for a little over $9k. But I really want that turbo so I am happy with it for $10k. (It will make my Boglehead friends jealous. :D )

I also see it another way. We've bought things before for a "total price" with some specified options thrown in. I knew they were included in the price and didn't need a separate dollar price for them to be shown. Sometimes contracts are written that way. For example, sometimes a business will say they will cover the sales tax that day. They don't have to reverse engineer each person's bill to re-calculate each item's price and add the local sales tax rate to come up to the shelf price. They just charge you for the total of all the items. Of course, they still have to pay the state, so at the end of the day, they total that day's sales and calculate the sales tax for the day. But your receipt may show $0 on the tax line. But I know the state has to get something from this transaction.

Another example showing it is all a matter of how you look at it is that all (most?) of the Bogleheads see it differently than you. Here's an idea. Wait 24 hours and then ask your spouse (in a neutral way) how he/she sees it. Don't try to bring him/her to your side.

There's often more than one way to look at things.
I agree it does depend on how you look at things. But if you were told the price is X, the option is Y, and so the price is X+Y, and you negotiate back to X, then you found out Y should have been 0, you would be happy paying that price? Why negotiate then at all?

Why shouldn't all sellers of goods just add fictitious line items to their invoices, so if the customer negotiates a discount, the discount is meaningless?
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

researcher wrote:
starguru wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
I think it says the salesperson is willing to let a PROBLEM BUYER walk away over .1% of the sales price.

If you are such a pain in the rear over a minor discrepancy at the very beginning of the process, the salesperson probably realizes that you will be a complete monster throughout the construction process.

It may not be worth their time dealing with someone like you.
So "someone like me" would be a bad salesman for letting a deal go over .1%, but this salesman is fine because the customer who is making a deal out of .1% is a "problem". This is blatant hypocrisy.

Seriously, what do you know about me other than that I enter a deal I want to understand the terms before the negotiation? Do you think I am having this conversation with the seller at the same time ("such a pain")? Why are you making this personal throwing insults out?
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starguru
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by starguru »

dbr wrote:
why3not wrote:
Kosmo wrote:. You negotiated a price to pay, not a price discount.
+1
Builder and you came to agreement to build house containing all of Y specs to price X.
I also agree with this. It is a total non-issue.
Again, we negotiated the price *based off* the base price for the house and the line items. We didn't walk in and say "we feel like paying X" without looking at the cost first. We were provided a faulty document that saying the base price was one thing, when really it was another.

It doesn't really matter anymore. If people would be fine with that, then great.

But I suggest next time you buy a car don't look at the sticker, don't look at the true market value of the car, just go in there and tell them what you are willing to pay for the car blind. After all, basing the price you want to pay off the listed price and option sheet is truly something only a fool would do. You'll either be too low and they will say no, or you will be too high and they will accept and you will have paid too much.
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by neilpilot »

researcher wrote:
If you are such a pain in the rear over a minor discrepancy at the very beginning of the process, the salesperson probably realizes that you will be a complete monster throughout the construction process.

It may not be worth their time dealing with someone like you.
+10
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Re: Weird house buying experience

Post by cheese_breath »

starguru wrote:
cheese_breath wrote:
starguru wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:
randomizer wrote: Based on what I've seen in this thread, I don't think so. I know you were speaking rhetorically, but you'd obviously be miserable in sales.
and probably not very good at it, since sales depends first and foremost on relationahips, which he seems prepared to nuke out of the water over literally 0.1% of the total price.
Interesting. So what does that say about these salespeople, since they are willing to let a sale go over .1% of the price?
It probably says it's a sellers market, and they'll sell to someone else.
Yeah these lots have been around for close to two years, maybe more, and their model is significantly discounted. People aren't gobbling these things up.
Then maybe he considered getting stuck with the empty lot to be the lesser evil.
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