To hold or ground or back down

2 Replies

This is a WWYD situation:

We were contacted by a potential tenant whose rental costs would be covered by an insurance adjusting company (referred to as XYZ Company) due to loss in a natural disaster. XYZ asked over the phone for our rates for a fully furnished, all utilities (including wifi and cable). We gave company said rates and they came back with that they could only do a three month lease so we agreed and increased our price accordingly, Company agreed. Company sends a confirmation of funds and lease term agreement that we sign. Company then calls and says they would like to lease for 8 months rather than the 3 month. They send new confirmation of funds and lease term to sign with the same rental amount as the three month. Company then sends a guarantee of funds letter acting as the official document for funds to be sent to us on behalf of our tenant. Lease agreement is then signed and submitted to company. Company comes back and wants an addendum with the funds added to the lease, no big deal, draft addendum, sign by both parties and then submit to Company. Prior to drafting the addendum we confirmed the rental rates once again with Company and received confirmation. All is signed and executed. Company is now coming back and saying they made a mistake and want the lower amount of rental rate - all lease documents have been legally signed and executed by ALL parties. 

Do you fight it - or do you back down on your price?

Thank you! 

How much is the difference? Is it really worth getting into a pissing match with a presumably gigantic insurance company over a few dollars? What happens if the insurance company tells you the contract isn't valid and places the people somewhere else? Are you going to sue the insurance company? They likely have buildings filled with lawyers that can make your life miserable, will be very time consuming for you, and will likely cost you way more than the difference in rates.

If it gets to court, you can argue that there is a signed contract and it is valid and perfectly legal. And they can argue that there was not a meeting of minds and there was a clear error in the contract as you failed to adjust the rate for the longer term and they failed to notice your failure.

I'd probably ask them to meet in the middle and if they refused, I'd likely back down. Pick your fights. A fight with an insurance company over a few dollars is not one I would recommend.

Thank you for the response! The difference is a very significant amount - that is what is making the ordeal frustrating. We are bending over backwards to accommodate the tenant. We don't ever rent furnished or utility included units. 

I would terminate the agreement before taking it to court - I don't want to take it that far. Meeting in the middle would be ideal.

Thank you again

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