The driveway crosses how many properties? How do we fix it?

There is this house.... that my office has "experience" and "history" in making it happen that first time.   I do not know who owned the house or who had the house listed when Lane Realty first clients purchased it, but they called one of my agents some time back in the 90s when they were ready to sell.  It was a charming house on a point lot in a convenient location with a view that was going to be a challenge to sell.  We priced the home and what the comps suggested and set forth our marketing.

Actually it took a relatively short time to find a buyer.  That's when the problems began.  The title search turned up a nightmare.  The driveway to this house crossed, not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 other lots to get from the county road to the property.  No easement was recorded.  The 4 pieces of property were owned by 4 different owners and all 4 were mortgaged.  Did you know if a property was mortgaged the lender has to sign a release in order for the owner to sign an easement.  Two owners were local, I got the owners and their lenders to sign the easement.  Then the hard part.  We got owners #3 to sign, but she had a national big bank lender and even locating someone who could sign was difficult. 

One of my agents and I spent hours on the phone talking to people until we finally got a VP branch manager who was authorized to sign the release form.  We had to drive two hours to get it signed, but we were facing a closing deadline that mean we needed the document that day, not two days later if we had overnighted.  Plus when you overnight something to a big bank you can't depend on them getting it signed and back out that day even if they say they will.  We finally got the 4th and last owner signature and until two days before the closing we had been unaware there was a mortgage on that house.  The mortgage was not taken at purchase, but an equity line at a later date.  Oooops.  The attorney popped his head in my office and and let us know we needed one more bank signature.  I said, "we'll get it by Friday."  It was Wednesday afternoon.  He laughed and shook his head at me.  

So the next day on a Thursday the listing agent and I took off to that bank.  We didn't get their until right around noon.  Who knew the bank closed at noon on a Thursday.  The drive through was still open and I slowly and carefully explained to the girl that I needed an officer of the bank with access to the corporate seal to sign the document.  Small town America, she called the bank President at home and he drove back to the bank and signed the document for us.  One last step.... it had to be recorded.  This process also usually takes days. But in small town America when you know the people in the clerk's office they will work that miracle for you.  

And did I mention that the attorney who had closed it for our sellers that time back in the 90s had KNOWN about the driveway and seen the survey and closed the deal.  So I bullied that attorney to do all the legal documents for FREE.... didn't cost our sellers one dime.  So we walked into the attorneys office, you know that one that laughed when I said we'd get it done and close on time... and we closed... on time.  I can't say that I love deals to be challenging, because I really LOVE easy deals.  But I will say, that if it can be done... I'm gonna do it.  I always give my buyer and seller clients my best effort.  And I don't NOT do something just because it's not in my job description..

So to save the deal... I  convinced the past closing attorney to do work she had failed to do, I drove far and wide for signatures of 4 owners and 4 banks and got all the signatures and last, but not least I walked in got my documents (survey, easement, permissions) recorded and stamped and walked out with them to take to the closing attorney to show they had all been recorded.  Like I said before, I prefer easy deals, but they are not always easy, so I face every obstacle as a personal challenge I must overcome.  And because we jumped through all those hoops when that seller was selling to  that buyer...  we also again sold the house to the next person.  He lived there until his health would no longer let him live alone.  We listed and sold to the next buyer.  Their family loved the lake so much they needed a larger lake house so we listed and sold it again.  Those buyers still live there and when they needed more room they built up.  Every time I drive across the lake I glance over and smile at that house.  Our... we will not give up efforts were certainly rewarded.  

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Tammy Lankford, Broker/Owner


Broker License # 169695  Lane Realty License # H-11420

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Comment balloon 41 commentsTammy Lankford • May 16 2012 11:42AM
The driveway crosses how many properties? How do we fix it?
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