It doesn’t work like that.

A friend recently told me about a couple he was working with. The agent has procured an acceptable offer for the sellers, and they were under contract. Inspections went relatively fine, and they had moved past the home inspection contingency, sailing in for the port of settlement.

Then one day he got a call from those sellers. They were worried about the buyer’s financing. They had taken it upon themselves to construct all sorts of scenarios about what could possibly go wrong in the buyer’s world, and had decided that if the settlement did not happen on the exact day that it was stated in the contract they were going to change the terms and refuse to pay the closing cost concession that they had agreed to in the contract.

Wait – what?

My friend was pretty upset. What was he supposed to say to these folks? Folks who had decided that if things did not go exactly as outlined, they were going to change the rules on what they had already agreed to do. They thought they could just change the terms of the contract – like that.

He felt that they were serious, and he was worried.

I told him what to say. It’s something we need to say quite often. It’s very simple. “It doesn’t work like that.” It simply does not work like that!

“If the buyer’s team is doing their due diligence, there is nothing wrong here. We are not permitted to penalize them in that way – per contract. It doesn’t matter if you feel like it. We can’t. That’s it.”

And stop talking.

No, it does not work like that. You are under contract, and you do not get to change the rules mid-stream. Because you feel like it. Because you thought about it more later. Because you need something to flex about today.

Real estate has a process. It has systems. It has a flow and an order of operations. Your agent is there to guide you through all of the pieces of the process.

Your agent cannot change the process for you because you would like it to be a certain way. Because you saw something on TV. Because your friend’s mom’s friend told you that you can.

It just doesn’t work like that.