Seller Threatening Not to Close (long) - Posted by Bob-Tx

Posted by JoeB(Atlanta) on February 07, 2000 at 22:12:55:

Hi Bob, sounds like you have 2 options.

1)Ask your attorney (if you’re currently using the lender’s atty or seller’s atty you may need to bring in your own atty) what your legal options are. But if you’re ready to close in about 7 days and the delay was OK due to the stip you quoted, then I’d think your atty would just call to notify of closing and maybe write a ‘nasty-gram’ letter to the Broker, or you could threaten lawsuit for performance and send cc of letter to your state board of realtors.

2)Assuming you filed an Affadavit of Contract, then if everything fell apart you could just sit back and wait until the next Buyer tried to close and decide how to financially remove your cloud on the title.

You definitely need to ask your attorney’s advice here.

Joe Brillante

Seller Threatening Not to Close (long) - Posted by Bob-Tx

Posted by Bob-Tx on February 07, 2000 at 18:20:46:

A couple of months ago I contracted to buy a personal residence with a scheduled closing date of January 9, 1999. During the inspections & evaluation process we learned that the house would need about $10k in foundation work and $7k in roof repair before any lender would lend on it.

This is a highly unique property built in 1900, about 25 years before the neighborhood around it was developed. The house sits on 4 city blocks, has two rent houses in addition to the main house and is just totally different than anything around it.

We began the process of qualifying for a 203K loan in order to roll these repairs into the loan thereby saving as much of our rehab money as possible for other stuff to be done.
Well, after 3 weeks of dealing with the fha 203k process we were informed by the appraiser that the house would not go fha and would not appraise for the requested loan amount.
The problem is the uniqueness of the property…no comps close enough to it that will support the increased price.
This answer came in last week at about the same time that the listing broker removed the “pending” status in mls and began to actively remarket the property. A call to the broker revealed that they believe we no longer have a contract because we failed to close as contracted.

The kicker here is that because of the complexity of the property, the survey did not come in to the title company until after they had removed the pending status and declared the contract null and void. When I suggested to the sellers broker that we did indeed have a contract because the contract reads - “The closing of the sale will be on or before Jan. 9 or within 7 days after objections to matters disclosed in the commitment or by the survey have been cured, whichever date is later.” He accused me of lying about my financing and stated that he would go to court to defend their right to cancel the contract…whew!

So now we have our funding in order going conventional, the lender is drafting a letter to the title company assuring them that we are approved and that docs will be ready along with funds in a couple of days…within the 7 day period stipulated in the contract.

My hope is that the seller will come to the table and close but what if they don’t? I’m hoping for some ideas here.
Any suggestions would be appreciated…we really want this old house. Sorry to be so long but felt the explanation was necessary. Again, thanks for your help.

Thanks So Much - Posted by Bob-Tx

Posted by Bob-Tx on February 09, 2000 at 11:53:53:

Thanks to all those who came through with great advice all around. We will persevere - I will update the group when the dust has settled.

One more reason - Posted by Bud Branstetter

Posted by Bud Branstetter on February 09, 2000 at 01:11:32:

To use the TREC.STATE.TX.US mediation form with all contracts. Even an arbitration clause would be in order.

One more thing… - Posted by BR

Posted by BR on February 08, 2000 at 21:36:28:

If the other suggestions don’t work you might have your attorney write a letter to the local Board of Realtors, first sending a copy to the listing broker. That will get their attention!

Ah, collective wisdom! - Posted by CarolFL

Posted by CarolFL on February 08, 2000 at 17:11:42:

It’s a wonderful thing!
I agree with both Joe and Carmen.
We went through a similar situation this past summer. The RE Broker actually was in the way of good understanding between us and the seller, and the broker, it turns out, was intimidated - nay, afraid, it would seem - of the seller.

Our suggestion? Get in touch with the seller personally, and have the affadavit Joe mentions ready to file if it is not. You may want to tell the seller you are filing (have filed), and why, so they don’t get their nose bent out of joint.

Clouding that title can be a wonderful thing.
Good luck,
PS We ended up closing successfully, and all was well that ended well! situations toooo similar!

Re: Seller Threatening Not to Close (long) - Posted by Carmen_FL

Posted by Carmen_FL on February 08, 2000 at 08:28:14:

Is the problem that now they want a higher price? If not, why not avoid a fight and re-sign another contract with a very short closing date?

I can’t see a seller turning you down if you really are ready to close in 7 days - especially if it’s a difficult property to sell (unusual). Are you able to talk to the seller directly? The broker doesn’t own the home (does he?) so he can’t decide what to do with it. If you put the house under contract “again” at the same price, showing proof that you are preapproved and ready to close - to appease the broker - it may save you a fight, and after all the goal is to get the property, and not who is right. Is it worth fighting the broker if you don’t have to?

Of course, if they’re now saying you can’t have the house at all, or want to raise the price, then by all means fight for it! Sounds to me like you’re legally in the right.

Interesting post! (nt) - Posted by SusanL.–FL

Posted by SusanL.–FL on February 08, 2000 at 07:52:05:


Re: Seller Threatening Not to Close (long) - Posted by ScottE

Posted by ScottE on February 08, 2000 at 24:08:34:


Tough situation. I pretty much agree with Joe that you should contact your attorney ASAP. Also, according to your contract, what is the last day for you to perform? If you are getting close and you can’t contact your attorney, you MUST file something with the court to protect your interest, otherwise, you may get stuck with zip.

Good luck