When Kyle McCorkel was on the hunt for his family’s next home, he knew the search would be an uphill battle. A real estate investor by day, McCorkel was keenly aware of just how hot housing was, so when the perfect property came around in October — a four-bedroom, colonial-style house in Hershey, Pennsylvania — McCorkel was ready to get creative to make a deal.
Apparently, that would require a bit of waiting.
“Their one contingency was that they got to spend this last Christmas in their beloved home,” says McCorkel, owner of Safe Home Offer. “I willingly obliged. I don’t think many buyers are willing to wait two to three months to settle and move into their new home.” (He’s right: The typical home took just 50 days to close in September).
Still, idiosyncratic homeowner demands like these became increasingly common in 2021’s extreme seller’s market. And the one McCorkel encountered? It might even be considered tame.
That’s because with record-low housing supply and surging buyer demand, sellers have had the clear upper hand for some time now. Most are using that leverage to cash in. According to a survey from Realtor.com, about 26% of homeowners plan to list their homes in the next year. Among that group, more than a third say they’re doing it to “take advantage of the market and make a profit.” Even more telling? Over 40% plan to ask for more money than they think their home’s worth.
It’s not all about profits, though. In fact, industry pros say some sellers took their demands much further this year — making some jaw-dropping asks in the process.
As Ryan Dosenberry, owner of Lakeshore Homebuyers in Michigan, puts it, “Without question, this year has been the wild, wild west of real estate. To say it was a seller’s market is an understatement.”
Just how wild did it get, though? Here are the most extreme seller demands we could round up.
Sellers sold their pets with the home
Buy the house, get a new pet, too? Apparently, that was a thing this year. Multiple agents have seen sellers include furry friends in their home sales.
Ben Fisher, an agent with The Fisher Group Park City Luxury Real Estate, had one such seller back in February — a discovery he says left him “speechless for a moment.”
“The guy seemed great, and everything was going so well until he came up with the weirdest demand I have ever heard,” Fisher says. “The gentleman had a pet dog named Jimmy, and he wanted to let the buyer keep the dog along with the house.”
According to the owner, Jimmy — …….