Appraisal contingencies

General Advice

JUL 9, 2022

I’m not sure of the exact moment that I started turning inward in search of meaning, but it was somewhere during the Spring of 2015. After a long bout of internal familial turmoil and power struggles, I realized that just because someone was older than me it didn’t mean they knew better. I come from a strong hierarchical Bengali culture where ones age + wealth dictates where you sit on the totem pole, as in most other cultures. Imagine being conditioned for 21 years of life to believe that the elders always knew better, only to have that stripped of any substance in a matter of months.

Looking back, it felt liberating.

When I write about personal development or my own life story, I’m really just writing to my past self. I want this content to be something that I would want to read, and owning it allows me to control that narrative. A lot of you reading this probably feel that your opinion doesn’t matter, but you’d be shocked at how people would prefer your point of view as long as you make it original & personal.

Being yourself is being opinionated about things you want.

I think for the longest time I was afraid of sharing my opinions from fear of going against the status quo. Oddly enough, when I realized things like ‘just because this guy’s 60 doesn’t mean he knows everything,’ I also came to learn that the best way to please someone — is to not. It’s to go about things yourself and take ownership, because other people can come along your journey, but it’s yours not theirs.

It would be an understatement to say the last few weeks have been mentally exhausting — I’ve felt completely drained and energized in the span of the same week. One of my buyers recently had his offer accepted at the start of last week, and it only took the sellers attorney 3 whole days to email a contract.

Upon review, we learnt there was no appraisal contingency.

An appraisal is a bank’s valuation of a property. During the crazy days of the housing market, buyers would waive an appraisal contingency since most people were offering way above listing price. For example, if a house is worth $500k, but a buyer offers $600k in hopes to get her offer accepted — the bank may still only value the property at $500k and won’t approve a loan beyond that. Since the buyer waived her appraisal contingency, she can’t back out (without losing her deposit) and will have to come up with the $100k difference in cash at closing.

Waiving appraisal contingencies is a strong way to get your offers accepted, but the tradeoff is that you’re liable for covering any difference in valuations.

After our amendments, they declined.

I spent 45 minutes talking to the seller’s broker trying to understand what happened. Typically, when you make an offer, it’s already contingent on a mortgage & appraisal unless explicitly stated otherwise. That, combined with the fact that rising interest rates are spooking buyers, I felt confident in playing hardball. I let the broker know if the amendment wasn’t accepted, we’re walking away.

It’s at these difficult times that I feel completely helpless and am filled with self-doubt. In reality, it’s only been 3 months since I started my business and in the grand scheme of things I suppose things are going pretty well considering I’ve already closed 1 deal. Looking inwardly for meaning is a gift and a curse because although the path to enlightenment starts within — so does anxiety and fear.


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