Profile picture for landacook

How do i get out of a contract to sell my home

I decided to sell my home a couple months ago, and we got an offer on my home.  We found another home in the meantime and placed an offer on it.  We found out my house was worth much more than what my realtor told me it was, and the home we are buying is worth less than what we offered based on my realtor's advice.  I also found out it is costing me more than I can afford to spend.  I want to back out and stay in my home, but are under contract.  Can I get out of both contracts?
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April 30 2010 - US
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Answers (7)

I have a suggestion slightly different than what I'm hearing other people say. Clearly you were given bad advice. But the very first thing I would do is have a face-to-face conversation with the Realtor you feel gave you bad information. Let them know of your intention to cancel the contract based on this bad information.

More than likely your Realtor will have the ability to solve this dilemma with simple communication. Get the Realtors broker involved too. When the broker hears the accusation that his sales person misled you he or she will take an active role in solving this problem. Nobody likes legal problems.

I do understand that contacting and hiring an attorney is one approach. I just think there is a much cheaper and quicker possible solution. With some effort you could get the buyer of your own home to agree to a contract cancellation and the seller of the home you are under contract to buy to cancel.

Wouldn't it be better to avoid a legal battle if not absolutely necessary? The only person who benefits by immediately hiring an attorney is that attorney.

I'm not suggesting you waste time here. I would immediately sit down with your Realtor AND his broker and explain that you MUST have both contracts canceled and they need to get to work making that happen if they want to avoid a lawsuit. If you intend to cancel both contracts you need to make this known right away. Everyone involved will be more inclined to cooperate the sooner they know the deals are dead. Draw it out and things can get much less pleasant.
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May 01 2010
I would hire a real estate attorney to run through both contracts and give you some legal advice about how you can accomplish your goal.
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May 01 2010
Definately consult with an experienced real estate attorney as soon as possible.  Without reading your contract and knowing the details I have no way to advise you about getting out of your contracts.  

Good luck.
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April 30 2010
On your listing agreement, there should be provisions for cancellation of escrow.

If all the contingencies have not been released, and if your sale of your property was predicated on your getting a replacement property, you may be able to cancel escrow.

But please consult with a real estate attorney to be sure.

Also....your comments raise other questions on why you think your house is worth nore than what you're selling it for. Did you not receive a comparable market analyis that would have shown you what your home is worth?  Or did someone else tell you that. Often, people who have not bought or sold property for a period of time consider themselves experts and advise their friends that their house is worth more than what they're selling it for. On what basis?

Realtors have their eyes and ears to the ground, doing this day in and day out -- and as such, their opinions are market-based and market-oriented.

So I am curious as to what you based your opinions on in terms of market values of the house you're selling and the house you're buying.

As for how much you can afford to spend...if you took out a loan, did your lender review your monthly payments based on your income? Then you would also know how much you could afford, right?
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April 30 2010
Profile picture for wetdawgs
Maybe, but you need to work with an attorney who can look at the specifics of both your contracts and find you a possible out.

It is sad that you allowed two agents to lead you astray related to prices.  If your offer is too high, you will not be able to get financing as the appraisal won't come in properly.
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April 30 2010
This is a matter you will have to go over in detail, with all the paperwork/contingencies/etc. with a competent professional.

On the surface, I would say that as long as you have a financing addendum on the purchase of a new home - you should be okay on backing out if you truly can't afford to purchase it. Or, if you have an inspection contingency that hasn't been signed off yet - there's your potential out.

The sale of your home may be more difficult to back out of...
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April 30 2010
You have a major problem.  Zillow answers cannot help you.  You need to consult with an Attorney who handles residential real estate matters.  You need to do this ASAP.  I have often heard of trying to get out of one contract, but two contracts is rare. 
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April 30 2010
 
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