‘How many times do we have to do this?’ I sighed, fighting the urge to toss my auction paddle onto the road. Instead, I squeezed it, tightly – so tight my wife had to almost wrench it from my grip to give it to the real estate agent wandering around the throng of disappointed would-be buyers.
‘As many times as it takes,’ she sighed, patting me on the arm and leading me gently back to our car.
‘I feel like we’re playing a rigged game,’ I stewed. ‘That house was perfect for us.’
‘Maybe,’ she said, amicable as ever. ‘But I bet it was perfect for them too. Hopefully they enjoy it, as much as we were going to.’
We turned back and looked at the two middle-aged bald men in suits who had won the auction with an outrageous bid well above asking price.
‘Yeah, I’m sure the multinational property company they’re representing is going to be thrilled,’ I said dryly.
‘Maybe we need a buyer’s agent? To help buy a house in Melbourne?’ my wife suddenly said, looking up from her handbag and the unending search for her keys.
‘A buyer’s agent, or advocate or something,’ she said, squinting as she traced the memory back. ‘Somebody was telling me about them the other day…’
‘And what do they do?’
‘I’m not sure exactly,’ she admitted. ‘But they help you buy a house, somehow.’
‘Out of the goodness of their heart?’ I asked, rolling my eyes.
‘You’re right,’ she nodded. ‘Much better that we stay living with my parents.’
‘Do you think we could find an expert buyer’s advocate for Armadale properties on the weekend?’ I said quickly, and she laughed at me.
‘Let’s look into it,’ she said. ‘And let’s go – those businessmen are starting to annoy me, and I’m worried I’ll hit them with the car on the way out of the street.’
I laughed, then peered a bit deeper past her calm exterior; she was just as enraged as I was.
‘Maybe I should drive?’