A collection of stories from real estate professionals detailing crazy, funny, or poignant experiences that have happened on the job.
Cartoon of people in car sinking into sea

© Steve Musgrave

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Puddle Jumper

In the oceanside village of Carova, N.C.—an area we call "the end of the Earth"—all the roads are sand, and four-wheel drive vehicles are required. I love showing this area in my Chevy Suburban, even if, sometimes, people just want a free, comfortable tour.

One day, a couple asked to see a remote property at the very end of the beach. As we were touring around the sandy trails, spotting homes and wild horses, we came across what looked to be a small, 10-foot-long puddle covering the road. I stopped and briefly studied the crossing, not thinking much of it. As soon as I started driving across the puddle, the entire front end of my car dropped into the water, hitting bottom at about five feet down. Water came over the hood and windshield and up to the top of the door handles. We were in deep.

I will never forget the woman screaming and her fiancé laughing as I punched the engine and blasted us out of the hole. It actually reminded me of my four-wheeling days in my youth. She wasn’t very amused, but he and I laughed the whole way back. They ended up purchasing a different property later that summer. When we went on home tours again, they brought their own four-wheeler—and they were quite cautious around puddles.

—Gregory B. Green, Village Realty Holdings LLC, Nags Head, N.C.

Your Seller Doesn’t Know Me, But...

A buyer’s agent called me once and asked for permission to get into my seller’s bathtub so she could demonstrate to her buyer—who was about the same height—that she could, indeed, fit comfortably. My client and I thought it was an innocent request, so we approved. Then, live over the phone, I could hear the buyer directing the agent to stretch out and contort into every position possible so the buyer could be sure the tub would work. Even after that kind of dedication, the buyer ended up choosing another home. But it sure was the most interesting call I’ve ever received!

—Mary Wright, GRI, NRV Gateway Realty, Christiansburg, Va.

No Graves, Please

My buyers and I arrived at a showing to find a row of tiny crosses at the end of the driveway. The seller met us outside and began telling us about the home—including what she said was a cemetery on the property. “That’s where they buried them,” she said pointing to the crosses. We didn’t stick around long enough to determine whether she was being serious. Either way, it seemed like a good time to go.

—Susan Austin, EPRO, PSA, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Clarksville, Tenn.