Always Choosing To Do The Right Thing

Cancer.                  I Can’t.                     I’m Done.                     I Don’t Care Anymore.

The words from a man dying of cancer and the mindset he has nothing to lose.

Shawn contacted me almost 2 years ago off my marketing he found on the internet. His first words, “I have a home to sell and I need help.” as he struggled to get a breath. “Of course,” was my response. Tell me your story.

Well… I have this property it is currently a rental and I need to get my tenants out so I can sell. What do I do?  “No problem, I have experience with rental properties and managing tenants as I own rental property like you.”  After an hour of learning his situation he was in with his renters, disclosing agency representation to him so he fully understood his rights as a consumer and answering his questions to the best of my ability Shawn said, “Thank You” this gives me a clear path I should consider.  Would it be “OK” for me to keep in touch with you Tim?  “Yes, of course.”

After months of talks back and forth with his tenants, the broker managing his rental property and myself; Shawn came to the conclusion it would be best I, Tim Murphy, represent him in the sale of his house. Once we had all of the proper documentation in place to support this I got to work.  I spoke with the rental broker, understood the renters situation, gave my insight into the situation for Shawn and did my best to help.  After 2 more months of negotiations with his renter they finally found another place to rent and moved out of his property so he could sell.  This was extremely important considering his circumstances, his battle with cancer.

“What do we do now Tim?”  Shawn I just want you to know I have you covered. I have all of the tools and resources to make this transaction as smooth as I possibly can. However, I want you to know the road is going to be long, there will be up’s and there will be down’s. But, at the end of the day I promise you one thing…. I will give you everything I have and exhaust all my resources to get this monkey off your back.

You see, when I was selling real estate from 2009 – 2013 I learned some very valuable lessons about survival.  During this time 85% or the real estate market was either a short sales or foreclosures. During this time you had to pick if you wanted to make a living helping people sell their home or be a slave to the bank(s).  These were hard times. I picked “Short Sales” because I knew I could help people and make a difference in their lives when they needed it most.  I was not interested in helping some big corporation, some bank save money or re-coop their investment after what I saw them do to “The People.” It was during this struggle, It was hearing the stories from each family and each family member about not having money, not being able to eat, not knowing where they are going to live, not knowing what to say to their children and not knowing who to trust…. This is when I realized I was a protector.

My natural instinct is to stand in front of that speeding bullet, to stop that 10 ton train and be the one person in your world at this exact moment you could trust to get you through the hardest time of your life. Shawn’s situation brought me back to this place. The emotions ran through me like a jolt of electricity and I told Diana, “We are going to help this guy no matter what it takes.”  She looked at me and said, “That is what I love about you Murph”  let’s do this and help Shawn out.  From that point forward we were “All In.”

The next step, get his home repaired to the best of Shawn’s ability and budget, to get his home cleaned so a new buyer felt like we cared; then put it on the market.  This was a 3 week process but, after many phone calls and tons of stress, to Shawn’s credit, he made it happen. Even while fighting his fight. We kept telling him this is the hard part. Once we have your home on the market we will take over and do the heavy lifting.

His home hit the market, we priced it right we had the proper marketing in place and the race was on. Time was running out… We only had so long to sell or else.

After several weeks, a good number of showings and much discussion we “Got an offer”  the buyer loved this little home on the lake, he was up for the challenge of fixing it and making it his own.  Shawn was happy because he could breathe again. One step closer to the end and getting another thing off his plate.  The buyer scheduled their inspection so they could do their due diligence and determine what this home will need for repairs when he moved in.  With another home to sell this buyer had written in the contract, “My offer is contingent upon the successful sale of my existing home.” Which he already had an offer on.  Cool!  During the inspection period a few things were found which the buyer asked to be addresses. The electrical box had a few wires crosses, double taps a little of this a little of that. The furnace had not been cleaned in sometime now and looked like it may need a tune up.

“What? I can’t do that,” said Shawn.  I have no money….

My response, well what would you like me to do?  The buyer is requesting this and without it they may not move forward. This is your chance to get that gorilla off your back and move on with your life. Shawn proceeded to tell me to go back and tell them “I can’t do it. I have no money.” So I did. The buyer’s agent and buyer were very sympathetic to the situation and said, “Well then we can’t move forward.” Hmmm…. Now What?

Again, I referred back to my times in 2009 – 2013 where I ran into these situations every single day. Day in and day out.  Because, I was fighting for families in a short sale situation facing foreclosure. It was at those times I looked deep within and found my true character. The real me. It was then I made the commitment to get the job done at all costs. Even if it meant I had to go home and tell my wife I didn’t get paid for months of work, 60+ hours of fighting with banks, processing paperwork and fighting for my clients, my friends.  The one thing that always kept me going… My wife never asked why, she never even blinked an eye. She just said, “Tim you are a good man. You are doing the right thing.”

So, I did it again. I told Shawn I would pay for the cost to have contractors come and look at the electrical box and furnace. If repairs were needed I told myself I would cover them. I needed to do the right thing and help this man in need.  $650 dollars later I kept my word and made it happen. The buyer was happy and the transaction moved on.  Until….

Until, 1 week before closing when the buyer’s agent called me to tell me the buyers of her buyer’s home may not qualify for financing… GREAT!  Murphy’s Law, “What can go wrong will go wrong.”

After much debate, talking with lenders, talking with the buyer’s agent, talking with brokers…. The deal was DEAD. Now what.. The clock is ticking and time is about to run out. We just lost our buyer and not to mention this buyer agreed to purchase the home even though the home didn’t appraise for the full purchase price this buyer agreed pay. So now I knew the home was not worth the price we had it listed for, by $8,000, but I still needed to find a way to sell it for Shawn. He needed me.

The call, “Hi Shawn, I know you are frustrated, I know you are pissed, I know you just want this to be over. But, are you going to quit? ” This was the big questions I didn’t know the answer to.  I sure as hell was not going to quit. That has never been a word I could EVER accept.  I was not raised that way, I didn’t get to where I am today thinking like that and there was no way I was letting Shawn down. No matter what I sacrificed or had to lose I always put myself in Shawn’s shoes and knew he had way more to lose than me. So, the rest really didn’t matter.

Tim, “I’m Done.”  What? we can’t be done. I have been here before. The odds are stacked against us “YES” but, I know we can do it.  I just know it.  Can we give it a shot?  What do you have to lose?

Shawn said, “I don’t want to waste your time. It just is not worth it.” My response, “Don’t worry about me!  I just need a chance.”  Shawn went silent – – – – – – – –

“Fine Tim. If you think we should. Do you really think you can make this happen.”

“Yes” I really think I can Shawn (In the back of my head I am telling myself I have no clue how I am going to sell a home that appraised for $8,000 less than list price and was in ruff condition. How will any buyer agree to this?).

The home goes back on the market and we wait…… week one, week 2, week 5, week 8, week ——–

Diana, emails me, “We got one!”  what? We got an offer. I have a shot. “YES!!!!”

After talking with the buyer’s agent about the house answering all of her questions we got an offer. This is GREAT.  The offer came in and it was very close to list price. We had a shot!

After much deliberation: Talking with title companies, talking with attorneys, talking with buyer’s agent we had come to a solution on how we were going to make this deal happen and everyone including the buyer and buyer’s agent were on board.  The deal was signed and we were rocking and rolling.  Damn that feels good Diana.  Wheeew.  I think we have a shot and getting this gorilla off Shawn’s back.  But Tim, Diana says.  Yes, what about the appraisal?  Oooooohhhhhh….  (as all the air came out of our balloon) You are right. I guess we will find out in 3 weeks when the appraisal comes back. Diana, no matter what, I have a feeling this will get done.

4 weeks later, the appraisal comes in $3,000 below the accepted purchase price. Here we go again!  How do I explain this to Shawn. What is he going to say. This poor guy all he wants is his house SOLD even if it means he gets $0.  Now we are looking at him having to bring thousands of dollars to the table to close.  As I gathered the fortitude to call Shawn I pondered a solution.

Before I could call Shawn the buyer’s agent contacted me and said, “Tim, don’t worry the buyer thinks this appraisal is not 100% accurate and he will cover the $3,000 difference. He still wants the house.”  WoW!!  I couldn’t have imagined a better scenario. This was great! Shawn is going to be ecstatic. So I called him and he was excited and relieved the buyer was going to keep moving forward.  But, Tim what about the other $850 I need to come up with to cover all of the other costs?  I  don’t have any money….

My response, “Shawn I will make it happen.” knowing this means another $850 was going to be coming out of my pocket to cover his costs. This would be a total of $1,500.  Oh well, it is more important I help Shawn, who is fighting cancer, get this gorilla off his back than any amount of money. If I was in his shoes I would pray to have someone more focused on a solution than money. Especially in the “No Trust” world of realtors who only focused on profits not people. In time of need when people are at the lowest point in their lives money doesn’t mean shit.  I knew it, Shawn knew it and anyone who has ever been there knows it.  All that really mattered was getting this home SOLD for Shawn, getting that gorilla of his back and allowing him one less thing to worry about so he could focus on the fight of his life.

After we closed my office manager Diana sent me this wonderful message……


This message from Diana made me realize people are watching, observing and judging based, not on what you say but, on what you do.

So proud & honored to be a part of Metropolitan Home Team today as a major good deed was done on behalf of Tim Murphy. Today, for one of our clients, in order to get the deal closed and all parties happy & satisfied at the closing table. 

Tim has been working with this seller for almost a year trying to get his house sold, the seller ran into financial difficulties due to a very serious health issue and told Tim he had no money to contribute to any part of getting his house sold. Tim STILL took on this transaction even though he knew he had upfront costs out of his pocket to get the property trashed out, cleaned and ready to sell just because he wanted to make a difference in the seller’s life (who was fighting cancer) and truly help him out. Today we closed on this house, we were all down to the wire, numbers on the sellers side were almost $850 short due to costs. Instead of holding up the deal, frustrating our seller who is very sick; or simply not closing…..Tim, without hesitation, told me he would pay for this so this transaction could close and everyone could move on.  I’m truly amazed…. I have never seen such generosity without asking anything in return. When I asked him why he did this…, “KARMA, what goes around comes around…. I want to be different, I want to take care of others like I would  want to be taken care of if I was in their situation.  Certain situations require patience & generosity. I care about my client’s and the outcome for everyone, it’s not about the money Diana, it’s about creating an experience, doing the right thing, making people happy and making a positive impact in people’s lives when you can. That is what I want to be known for.”

As someone who works with Tim on a daily basis, experiences the trials and tribulations we come across on a daily basis and observes his actions…. I am blessed to know I have a friend who puts others before himself and does the charitable thing when people need it most.

– Diana Pedersen (MHT Team Member)

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