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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    Would like to get your take on my situation here, sorry, a bit long, thanks in advance.

    We purchased a new construction condo about 2 and a half years ago.
    Our unit is nearly finished and we are scheduled to close in approx. 3 weeks.

    With in those two years, we've had a lot of changes, including job relocation.
    It no long makes sense for us to live in the unit. Unfortunately the builder
    placed a clause in the contract that prevents us from selling for a period of
    1 year (deed restriction), this was to prevent flippers from purchasing.
    We have looked into renting the unit, but could only do so at a 700-800 dollar
    monthly loss.

    I have explained our situation to the seller and asked for right to sell or
    default our earnest money. Both requests were refused.

    I have since met with a real estate lawyer. He believes we have a good chance of getting our earnest money back because the seller has breached the contract. The breach is because of a stated 2 year delivery date. It has since been 2 1/2 years. Of course there are several clauses stating possible delay due to external factors. We have sent a letter to the seller stating our request for return of earnest money due to breach of contract.

    My fear is that this is what will happen:
    1 - We've sent a letter to them stating breach.
    2 - They will send a letter back stating delay is because of such and such reasons.
    3 - We'll send a letter back saying, prove it.
    4 - They come back with some justification.
    5 - Meanwhile, our closing date has passed and we are now in default and owe for cost of delaying closing.
    6 - Lawyer says, ok, their justification is B.S. lets file suit.
    7 - Suit fails and lawyer says, sorry, I tried, but thanks for the money...
    8 - I'm several months past closing and owe all sorts of penalties, legal fees, and still have to purchase the place.

    My question is what are my chances here? Is the lawyer just taking me along for a ride that ends up with me shelling out bucks to him, losing my earnest, plus shelling out additional funds for the sellers legal fees and delay of closing?

    thanks for any input.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    354

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    If you are concerned about your lawyer's advice, you have time to seek another opinion. Find another real estate attorney in your area and schedule a consultation as soon as possible.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    Well i'm not sure whether I should be concerned or not, that's basically my question. Is this a battle that can be won or am I just headed down a slippery slope?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    354

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    only an attorney familiar with your state laws and who has access to the language in your contract can make that determination. Did you mention in which state the property is located?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    Good catch, I thought I posted it in the title, but I guess not. The state is VA.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    I understand that only a lawyer w/ access to my contract can tell me specifics. That's not really what i'm asking for. I'm interested to know if anyone has dealt with or been involved with a similar case and how well it stands up. Of course it's different from state to state, and case by case, but generally speaking is a delay of delivery a solid argument?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    One thing to remember Lawyers get paid whether you win
    or lose.

    Figure out how much it will cost to litigate $10k or over

    You default and lose $8k well pretty easy decision!!!!

    SKidoddle

    By the way sell the place using a installment sale
    if you can sell it at not much of a loss!!!!!

    In other words write a purchase contract and make it
    binding between you and a buyer and close 1 yr later!!!

    Maybe that will work

    SKidoddle

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Is this lawyer taking me for a ride?

    You are asking for sppecific answers to specific situations Since nobody here has any idea what reasons the builder has for the delays and you do admit there is a clause allowing delays under certain circumstances, it would not be possible to answer you.

    A delay of delivery could be reasonable justification but we have no idea if the delays are reasonable and allowable.

    So, with that said, delay of delivery could be a solid argument. His defense to the claim would be the determining factor as well as your actions based upon the delay past the 2 year point, which apparently up to now, have not been a problem. The courts could look at that at decide against you based upon your lack of action at the 2 year point.

    Not sure what skidoddle was reffering to about losing $8k. I'm under the impression he was implying your loss of your earnest money. Be warned, you could lose a lot more than your earnest money should you default on the purchase and still be required to purchase the unit. That could be a slippery slope you do not want to attempt to go down, especially without legal advice.

    I would suggest a second opinion.

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