You Just Never Know

We finalized a contract on our former house earlier this week! Yeah!

We’ve been working with a realtor. He got a commission as our buyer’s agent and agreed to reduce his commission from 6% to 4% if we let him be our seller’s agent. In doing so, he’d give the buyer’s agent their full 3% and only take 1% because he didn’t want to discourage other realtors from showing it.

He got it posted on all the sites, the sign in the yard, took pictures, etc. I asked about info sheets outside and he said people really didn’t do that anymore. (I still see them all over the place). Nor did he print any and put them inside. He also said open houses were a thing of the past, yet I saw a list of open houses every week.

Finally, I told him if he didn’t want to man an open house, I’d do it and just say I was the host. I printed info sheets for inside. He left the signs in the garage. We got balloons. Hubby put signs and balloons out then went to the gym while a friend and I “hosted” the open house two Sundays in a row. For open houses to be out of fashion, we had a lot of traffic and several interested buyers.

Once we started the open houses, the regular showings also picked up. Go figure.

It worked fine, me pretending not to be the owner until I opened the door to a couple that looked very familiar. As it turned out, they’d lived two doors down from us when we moved in. They’d over downsized when they left the neighborhood about eight years ago and still had a lot of friends in the area. We really liked them. They already knew the neighbors, and we all felt they were the right fit–we just had to work out the specifics.

They said if we’d not had the open house, they wouldn’t have dropped by.

I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch. We haven’t closed and I know all sorts of things can happen between now and then, but from the time they walked through the door, I felt they were home.

So, since the house was staged with extra furniture, the next few weeks will be filled with culling, selling, and moving AGAIN. I’m not looking forward to that part of it, but I am looking forward to having all of our plants under one roof (it makes watering easier) and to getting everything in this house so I can finally feel settled.

One more thing to check off the list!

~ Kay

Killer Nashville

It’s mid August in Nashville and that means it’s time for my favorite writing conference: Killer Nashville.

img.php

The conference is Friday through Sunday with a few pre-conference events on Thursday. Sessions and activities are crammed into every minute. This year’s guests of honor are best selling authors Lisa Jackson and William Kent Kruegar.

 

There will be book signings, agent/editor round tables, breakout sessions on all sorts of subjects, a fake crime scene (or is it real?), a wine tasting, and much, much more.

 

I’m going to be sitting on two panels. Joining me to talk about cozy mysteries will be Jenna Bennett/Jennie Bentley, Caroline Fardig, Jackie King, and Nancy Parra. I’ll share the Southern Fiction panel with Cathy Pickens, Heather Haven, Dee Phelps and Rosalyn Ramage.

 

BUT, you have to register to attend, so hop to it. Information is on the KN website.

 

~ Kay

 

I HATE COMCAST!!!!!

I don’t use my blog as a forum to rant and rave–okay not often–but today, please indulge me.

In case you missed the title: I hate Comcast. But I’ve had the same e-mail address for 12 years. It is tied to so many facets of my life that it would be difficult to switch. I do have gmail accounts, and I even check the one I use for my writing. Maybe I should start transitioning what I have on Comcast to a non-writing g-mail account or to my “me” account on the cloud. It’s something to think about.

We have cable TV, phones and Internet with Comcast. When we moved two months ago, I dropped the TV and phone at the other house, but kept the Internet for the security system. Then I found out the security system didn’t need the Internet so I dropped it too. I took all of the little boxes to the local Comcast store (got receipts) and all was right with the world.

Well, not really, because it was a bitch getting these services installed at the new house. Part of the problem stemmed from the fact that it was the installers second day on the job, and he didn’t have any backup (we live waaaay out of town now). The other part was because the previous home owners had pulled the cable out of the wall. If we’d known they wanted a piece of cable that badly, we’d have bought them one. In ripping it out, they bent the conduit. Hubby couldn’t thread new cable through the opening. New cable guy couldn’t thread it. I finally had to call an electrician who cut five (5) holes in the wall. Then I had to call the painter who had to fix five (5) holes in the wall. Almost $500 later…Yes, I would have gladly bought previous owners a piece of cable. But that wasn’t Comcast’s fault.

What was the Comcast installer’s fault was he was 4 hours late for his appointment, without a call. When he did call, he said he didn’t have the television equipment I’d ordered and asked whether I want to reschedule or wanted him to bring different equipment (not as good as what I’d ordered but would cost the same). If I made another appointment, I asked, could he guarantee they’d have the equipment then? He couldn’t, so I told him I wanted my Internet that day, as promised. I told him not to worry about the TV equipment–to bring what he had. It was obvious he didn’t want to come. He said I’d have to pay an additional installation charge if I changed to the other equipment later.  I knew I could talk to whomever I had to talk to and explain if what I ordered wasn’t available when promised it should be installed when it was available at no charge to me, and of course that’s what happened. Make another appointment, indeed!

Our subdivision is new and our street is even newer, so I had to talk to the installer several times to get him here. When he made it, he was sweating bullets. That’s when I found out it was his second day on the job. I was nice to him — really I was — but frustrated with Comcast for sending someone so inexperienced to do the job. Later, when a different installer came to bring the upgraded box (at no charge) he just shook his head as he neatened up the cabling mess his predecessor had left behind. But I got service at the new house and, for the most part, it has worked fine, so I’m not complaining about that. Well, I guess I am, but that’s not my BIG complaint.

My BIG complaint is when new guy installed new service, I apparently got a new username for the Internet. BUT HE DIDN’T TELL ME!!! My old username–which was my e-mail address worked just fine, so I was none the wiser. However, over the weekend, my e-mail stopped working. I couldn’t log into my account. You can guess where I’m heading, right?

I thought it was probably something simple, so I tried to resolve during an online chat with Comcast. This is when I found I had a different user name. I told him I wanted the old one back. He said it was still tied to the old account. I said the old account had been closed. He said it had a balance, and until I paid the balance they couldn’t transfer the username. WHAT????

Going back two or three weeks ago, when I called to disconnect the account: I was told I had a CREDIT balance which would be put on my new account. This probably would have been a good time for the rep to have told me I had thirty days to transfer the user name to the new account or it’s gone forever. Luckily, I’m still within the thirty day period. Rep Saturday night said no credit balance — past due balance. I said I hadn’t gotten a bill. He said it’d been sent to the new user acct. I reminded him I didn’t know about that account. I asked him the due date. He said Aug. 20. I said my calendar said it was August 9, how could it be past due? He said because the account was closed.

I couldn’t handle that by online chat. I had to talk to someone who could hear the emotion in my voice. By then, it was after midnight. I called and talked with a young man with excellent customer service skills (Jason), or I probably really would have blown a gasket.

So, back to the balance. Where did it come from? Equipment. They think I have equipment from the old house. I don’t. I have receipts from where I turned it in. Jason said it must be their mistake, but they couldn’t rectify until Monday because that department was closed until then. Okay, I tell him, I’ll pay what Comcast says I owe and straighten it out on Monday. They can credit it against future bills. Nada. The billing department was closed too. ARRRRR!!!!!

So, since Saturday, if you e-mailed me, it bounced back as though this 12-year-old account didn’t exist.

This morning, first thing, I called and talked to customer service. I think I reclaimed my e-mail address. I say think because they said it will take 30 hours to transfer from the old address to the new address. They said any e-mails sent wouldn’t bounce back, they’d be held in queue until I could retrieve them. Can you believe I believed them? I’m so gullible. I e-mailed myself from my g-mail account and guess what! It bounced back. I called back and talked to technical support. They said I should have access within 24 hours. (It had been less than 30 minutes since prior call, not 6 hours.) He said they shouldn’t bounce back so I asked him to e-mail my address. Of course it bounced back to him. He assured me once it cut to the new address all would be okay. I used to work in telecommunications. I know it is possible. All I can do is wait 24 hours and see what happens. Funny thing, they did all of this without mentioning a past-due account–the reason given for why it couldn’t be done Saturday.

Regardless, I asked the technician to transfer me to billing. I’m pretty smart, but the billing guy talked in such jargon and double talk that I have no idea what he said. What I think he said was Comcast would investigate (investigate what???), and within two billing cycles, the equipment I turned in should be credited to my bill. He said he’d escalate it to a senior somebody or a manager or a blah blah blah blah blah and someone would call me with a disposition sometime. I’ll just watch the bill and see what happens with that too.

I’m trying to sell a house — that’s the e-mail address I use with my realtor. That e-mail address is tied to some important, time-sensitive non-writing business deals. That is the e-mail address used by most of my friends and family. My primary Facebook page is tied to it. This blog is linked to it. You get the idea. It’s important.

Here’s what’s really gotten my panties in a wad:

  • they gave me a new user name without telling me
  • when they issued the disconnect they didn’t tell me I’d lose my user name (which happened to be my e-mail address of 12 years) or suggest I transfer it to the new address
  • I’ve spent several hours trying to resolve this and I’m not sure whether or not it is resolved

 

I feel like I’m on double secret probation. What’s next?

Anybody out there have Comcast stories to share? Misery loves company!

~ Kay