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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 36990
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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My husband and I have been trying to buy a house since the

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My husband and I have been trying to buy a house since the first of March. We made an offer and accepted the sellers counter offer. The house is over 4000sq ft on 20 acres and just needs cosmetic work. It is located in Fentress Co. Tn. And we agreed on a price of $115,000. We've had trouble since the very beginning. The first bank we went to (which knows us very well) said no problem. He went out and looked at the property (it is a foreclosure) and came back and was telling us it was going to make a beautiful house. Then he told us we were going to need more money for a down payment than what we thought. We told him ok we had it...then he said we needed more. It was almost $40,000 we were going to need. I told my husband we would find another lender. We went to another lender and within 2 weeks we were approved....but the real estate agent said we didn't get our paperwork in on time (which we did). I threw a fit and called and talked to the lawyer representing the seller. The real estate agent let us know that they were going to accept our offer that the closing date had changed to June 6th. Our lender called us on May 11th and set up an appointment for us to close on May 15th. Then called us back the 13th and said the underwriter wouldn't sign off because the house was to old (which they knew EVERYTHING before we started the process of applying with them). We talked to ANOTHER lender. They are actually part of the bank that has the house, but she said she would need an extension to get it done but she could do it. When I asked the realtor about getting an extension she said that it would be a 50/50 chance. They might since we were going through the banks lending service.....but she's had 2 other agents make offers on the house. It was my understanding that since we had a buyer's agreement (and there is nothing in it that says the seller can back out if they have a better offer) and we paid our earnest money that they couldn't take offers on it. It also says in the counter offer we signed that if we had an extension we have to pay $50.00 a calender day for any day after the closing date and we are ok with that. But I don't know if there is anything we can do?
Hello and thank you for using JA! My goal is to provide you with excellent service and help with your legal problem.
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It was my understanding that since we had a buyer's agreement (and there is nothing in it that says the seller can back out if they have a better offer) and we paid our earnest money that they couldn't take offers on it.
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You are correct, the contract is binding up until the closing date set in the contract. However, if you aren't able to close on the date set in the contract and the seller is unwilling to grant an extension, they can terminate the contract on the closing date and would then have to refund your earnest money before they could put it back on the market.
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As for other offers, while the property is pending, they can still show it and take back up offers that wouldn't be effective until your contract expires.
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If your contract allows for an extension at $50 per day, the I would opine that the seller probably can't back out and would be obligated to honor the extension clause in the contract as long as you paid the $50 per day. The caveat would be if the seller has to agree to the extension. If they have to agree to any extension and you have to pay the $50 per day, they seller could then refuse any extension, terminate the contract, and then put it back on the market. But It isn't up to the realtor as to whether extensions are granted or not, it is up to the seller.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

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I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
But what if we don't think the realtor is keeping up their end of the bargain. It seems like she is trying to get us to back out or lose the contract. She has already not gotten our paperwork turned in on time once and we have questions to whether she is actually asking for the extension.
As a Realtor myself, I would suggest that you simply stay on your realtor to represent your interests. They have a duty to represent you first and foremost. I would make it very clear that you expect her to represent you in this transaction and submit documents when asked because you would not want to have to contact the Real Estate Commission based on her doing or not doing things that were not in your best interests. There is a Realtor code of ethics and professional responsibility that all licensed realtors have to abide by and one of the primary rules is that they represent their client appropriately and professionally. If they don't they can be sanctioned by the Real Estate Board including fines up to suspension or revocation of their licenses.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

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I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.


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