Buyer and agent backing out after signed contract

9 Replies

So here it is: My partner and I put a property up for sale (SFH flip). A buyer's agent submitted a written cash offer. No contingencies, no inspection, etc. Complete "as is" purchase. We countered and it was accepted. They provided proof of funds and sent us back the contract, signed and all. Written into the contract was that the money would be paid no later than 48 hours after the signed date.

Written into his offer was that we had to accept by 5pm. We met that deadline and gave them until 9am to accept our counter, and they met that deadline. Thus, the property was listed as “Pending.”

However, a few hours after submitting the contract, the agent contacts our agent to say the buyer was not going to go through with the deal. He claims that he and his client had a “falling out” and therefore they weren’t going to go forward with closing. He also went on with some story about the guy wanting to buy the house for someone and possibly them falling out or whatever; I couldn’t care less about that.

We have several slightly higher offers (though they are conventional and FHA offers) but now we're locked in a contract with this guy, and the last thing his agent reached out to us to say was basically his client definitely won't be showing up to the closing. Now he (the buyer's agent) is not communicating at all.

Mind you, he made a lowball offer, then a best and highest. Once we accepted the higher offer (again, all in writing), he tried to change his mind to a little under that, his agent saying he felt he was overpaying. Before we even had a chance to dispute anything, the agent came back and said he’d go through with the deal....only to now say he’s not paying after sending in a signed contract.

This is certainly a first for me. What do you do if you’ve got a signed contract, no one’s showing up to close, and ignoring all correspondence? Our realtor is suggesting we “move on to the next buyer” but 1) We’re technically under contract now and 2) Clearly cash beats waiting out the conventional offer, which the buyer says she intends to close within 30 days if she can. Is the cost of pursuing this legally even worth it?

Thanks in advance.

move on deal is dead.. it happens all the time you may have had a wholesaler or someone like that just playing games..  you only wasted a few days. put it back on market.

have your agent put in private remarks.. sale fail no fault of property or seller.

I'd alert the realtor's broker about the situation and then keep it moving. Going the legal route will cost you dollars you don't need to want/need to spend. Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em.

@Jay Hinrichs I’ll look into that. All this happened less than 2 days ago and everything subsequent to the contract was said over the phone. We’ve got no real evidence he wants to back out so what if we move on to the next buyer (who is still waiting) and then the original guy magically turns around and says WE are in breach? Will “The agent called and told us to forget it” hold up?

In other news, the “PRO” icon by your avatar just reminded me I let my pro membership lapse. Gotta add that to todays’ “To Do” list. Lol

It seems simple....if the contract required the EM within 48 hours and they did Not deposit it, you simply send them a notice of breach and cancelation...no acknowledgement from them is necessary.

If they Did deposit it, you either have to wait it out while taking back up offers, or give them all or part of it back for a signed cancelation.

Depending on the contract, sounds like the buyer missed a deadline and deal is terminated.  Send them a termination agreement and get it signed and carry on.