Suing a seller for violating purchase agreement?

7 Replies

I'm curious - Has anyone here sued a seller for selling a house after a purchase agreement was signed? I have an agreement signed but it appears I have an unethical seller who is still trying to sell the place. 

@Bernard Chouinard it is possible but you might need an attorney to review the purchase agreement carefully to determine if the seller in fact did violate the agreement. All dates, initials, signatures need to be in order. Good luck!

How are they trying to sell it? They might still be marketing it for back ups.

Depends on the exact wording regarding default in your contract, or absent that, state law......rarely worth it.

at this point who cares  unless you think they are competing against you and you only went into contract to try to flip the contract for a profit... I could see that as an issues.

but there is nothing wrong with a seller going for back up offers if they think your contract has any question that it will close. 

on our MLS we have something called bumpable.. seller can bump you if there are any contingencies.. and move the other into first position..

Suing for performance can be long and costly.. I have done it once and I won... but I also put up 40k and release it too the seller and they would not come to closing  and did not have the money to pay me back.. so I had no choice in the matter.

another 2 years and 15k in legal fees and the only reason the legal fee's were that low the seller would never show to court or answer anything .. if the seller bows their back it can get real expensive.

I've never done it, but I wonder if a possibility in some situations is simply to tie up the property through a legal proceeding so that the seller can't sell it with clean title to anyone else for an extended period of time. That might motivate them to fulfill a binding contract to sell to you.

I can't imagine signing a purchase contract (esp if it was for a primary residence) in which the seller could simply cancel for a better offer. 

You could sue for specific performance if the seller violates the contract, but as @Jay Hinrichs stated, it could be costly to get courts and lawyers involved. Also, if they have not breached the contract and continue to show the property and take offers, unless otherwise stated in the contract, they should be able to do that.

Ok so overall general consensus..  Plenty of deals out there simply not worth your time, money and energy.  Thanks all! 

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