Seller Not Show Up At Close

8 Replies

I have a contract to buy real estate. Just got the settlement statement, money is in escrow, and the seller disappeared.

I did some investigating and have reason to believe he sold it to someone else with quit claim deed yesterday. (He didn't want to pay the judgement against him from two years ago.)

What is my recourse? 

I agree that you should probably move on.  But, in the interest of what you COULD do, the first question is weather you had an earnest deposit on the contract.  

If so, you could move to the next step in the process, but most wouldnt.

If you didnt have a deposit, then you really should move on.  Contracts in most states require a bi-lateral agreement.  Meaning that you are both making a commitment.  Having an earnest deposit upholds your requirement for the bi-lateral clause in most states.

Let us know what happens.

Not legal advice.  Contracts without earnest can and do close all of the time, its just a legality in most jurisdictions.

He might've had another contract before yours. If not you would probably have to go through alot of legal work to get it even though you had rights to it. Not even worth the hassle. Some people are just unpredictable. Maybe look the house up in public records to see who the title holder is. Maybe he didn't sell it. Maybe he just didn't show up. Then again maybe he did. I'd still check public records. Let us know what you find.

Haha! It never surprises me what debtors will do to avoid paying a judgment!  

As for a recourse of action, I would talk to your attorney. I would first ask them what remedies I could seek, then I would ask how much it is going to cost. Most likely, the resulting outcome would be a judgment of some sort... And you have seen (up close and personal) how he deals with judgments.

Time is money. Get your money out of escrow, and go find a cash-flowing property.

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Create Lasting Wealth Through Real Estate

Join the millions of people achieving financial freedom through the power of real estate investing

Start here