Brings back many many memories of closings in NY (and not just the City) and is one of the reasons I prefer these days to just deal with the "books". The very first closing I attended as a "baby" paralegal, I opened the door to the closing room and a stapler flew past my head (it was a situation where the sellers were in the middle of a divorce and the wife threw the stapler at the husband and missed).
Another memorable one was during the refi boom in the 90s that the documents came in 0.0005% different than the commitment the bank sent (remember when banks actually gave a commitment as to the terms of the mortgage BEFORE the closing?). After 3 hours of arguing with the bank's attorney, I calculated it out over the 30 years and it came to about $50. I reached into my purse and put $50 on the table and asked if we could now close.
However, the most memorable one was for a condo in NYC. Again, closing documents came in with a different interest rate than the commitment and the client was very upset. This was not a $50 difference over 30 years, but a full point higher than the commitment. The client asked the bank attorney to please call the bank and correct the obvious error on the closing documents. The bank attorney refused saying - neither the bank nor I make errors. Client continued to sign the closing documents from the bank, but kept asking the bank attorney to call the bank, but he refused and pompously told the client - take it or leave it. Well, right before the last few documents were executed, the client excused himself from the closing table and made a call to his investment broker. He told the broker that he was scheduled to go on vacation for the holidays (this was in December) and if he liquidated a certain stock, how much money would he loose. At the end of the phone call, the client asked the bank attorney one last time to please call the bank. He again refused and told him - it's the golden rule - he who has the gold rules. The client never lost his cool and told the bank attorney - I'll leave it. He then looked at the seller's attorney and asked if he minded waiting for an hour or so since it would take that long to get the check from the investment broker for the entire purchase price (this was the mid 90s and the purchase price was 2.5 million). He said he would and we should probably all go to lunch while we waited. The bank attorney was absolutely stunned and asked what he could do to make it better. The client told him that he had been given ample opportunity to make it right and he refused. Further, the client told him that every single one of his family's business accounts would be removed from the bank and he would make sure that this attorney never again closed for the bank. And with that, we went to have a fabulous lunch in midtown Manhattan. BTW, the attorney did, in fact, never close for that bank again. I told the client that he was definitely a hero for all those poor slobs that had been screwed by banks in this way, but could not afford to pay cash for a property. Still makes me smile to this day!
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