Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by Wilton

Posted by IB (NJ) on December 31, 2000 at 24:14:45:


Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by Wilton

Posted by Wilton on December 28, 2000 at 19:02:57:

I sold the house…Buyers are finding some things that they are not satisfied with…
The water was tur;ned off at the street, and the pipes were drained (even vacuumed) and the drains suctioned and antifreez installed. When they have the water company turn the water on, im sure the pipes will be fine. If they are not, I will be willing, even tho the contract releases me, to help or replumb.
The floors are uneven. Higher in some locations than in others.
An elevctric outlet does not work.
Other remarks of finding problems.
Sales price of this house 51K, so its not a deluxe piece of property to begin with…
I am willing to work with them some…I dont want to load them into a bad house, but Im worried that they will want out of the deal. CAN THEY BACK OUT AT THIS POINT?
I am in the state of MIssouri
Thanks in advance for any help.

Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by JPiper

Posted by JPiper on December 28, 2000 at 23:58:02:

There’s no 3-day right of recission to a real estate contract in Missouri. I doubt this right would exist in virtually any state.

However, just because there is no 3-day right of recission does not mean a buyer can’t back out of a contract. It would depend on what the contract says. For example, the buyer may have the right to inspect, and reject the property based on the results of the inspection. They may have this right depending on the contract EVEN IF the property is sold “as is”. Again, it all depends on the contract. But no cancellation based on a 3-day right in and of itself.

The problem is that you can win the battle and lose the war. So what if your contract can’t be cancelled? Ever tried to “force” a buyer to buy? The best scenario is to give the buyer the right to inspect, and then have them sign an acceptance of the property. If you’ve got some minor stuff that’s wrong, fix it. Turn the water and other utilities on so they can inspect the property properly. In general, make them comfortable with the property.

If they back out of a legitimate contract keep the earnest money (unless it’s held by a title company in which case the buyer will have to sign a release).


Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on December 28, 2000 at 23:42:25:

Call a local attorney and ask them if your state has a law that allows parties to back out of a REAL ESTATE contract within a certain time frame.
Make sure you state REAL ESTATE CONTRACT, because it could be different from any other type of agreement.
I know that is the case here in my state.
There is a 72 hour, or 3 business day right to back out on contracts and agreements, but NOT for Real Estate agreements.

Check out the laws in your state.

Jim IL

Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by B.L.Renfrow

Posted by B.L.Renfrow on December 28, 2000 at 21:22:39:

The scenario I’ve run into a couple times is this: I tell the potential buyers it’s up to them if they want to have a professional inspection performed, do it themselves, have their Uncle Louie look it over, or whatever, before we write up a contract. They decline. I tell them everything I know that’s wrong with the property (I am in a non-disclosure state). I have them initial the “as is” paragraph. Then they move in and start finding things wrong.

If the buyers have been cooperative throughout the process, didn’t lie or try to con me, and paid a substantial downpayment, I will usually fix the problem if it’s a legitimate complaint which I didn’t know about. I’ve repaired a furnace and a hot water heater in this situation.

On the other hand, if the buyers are more “marginal” and/or the complaints are petty, I tell them nicely that it’s not my problem. If they persist, I tell them to read their contract. If they want to back out after that discussion, I will let them out, because I know at that point I’ve probably made an error in judgment and they will be nothing but trouble.

As Dew says, it’s all – or it should be – contained in the contract. If your state has a specific 3 day right to rescind a contract, that obviously would be a factor also.

Brian (NY)

Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by dewCO

Posted by dewCO on December 28, 2000 at 20:55:24:

What does your contract say???

If they have the right to inspect the property (and they should) then they probably have the right to back out by a certain date. Better talk to them sooner rather than later, ask for their list and see what you can negotiate. If you knew of these problems beforehand you should have warned them, “priced for condition”. If you didn’t and the problems are real, then you should have. So see if you can “make it right”, if you can’t move on and do it better next time with next buyer.

Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by Michigan Andy

Posted by Michigan Andy on December 29, 2000 at 08:51:38:

There IS a 3-day right of recission in Michigan.


Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by JPiper

Posted by JPiper on December 29, 2000 at 09:18:57:


I don’t know the Michigan laws…and I’m going to assume you do. But be careful here…this is something to double check. Consumer contracts in many, if not all states, have a 3-4 day right of recission. Refinancing can be cancelled in 3-4 days in most states. Real estate contracts do NOT typically fall within ANY of these laws.

Maybe Michigan passed a specific statute providing for this. Or maybe the standard Realtor contract in Michigan contains this type of language. But if it’s the latter, this becomes a contractual right, not a statutory right…meaning that those using this standard contract have the right to terminate but it’s not a statutory right within the state.

As I said above, I don’t know the Michigan law. But in the past there has been considerable confusion on this site regarding this topic. Again, if I were you I would double check to see if in fact there really is a statute, whether this is simply a contract clause, or whether this is correct at all. If it’s correct there should be a statute you can read.


Re: Can the buyer back out within 3 days? - Posted by AWWmi

Posted by AWWmi on December 29, 2000 at 22:43:10:

Andy, I live in west Mich. and never knew about this. Is it statutory or an addendum written by you in your contracts? I’ve never seen anything pertaining to a 3 day clause in any of the realtor contracts that I’ve signed. Curious, please reply.