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I have a seller that refuses to close on house contract

my contract closing has come and I showed up with closing check and the seller doesn't want to sell now because he thinks the house is worth more money. The title company verified the money was available. what recourse do I have to stay in the house until I can get title.
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October 31 2013 - Las Vegas
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Answers (11)

Very sorry to hear that. Consult with a real estate attorney and with the other broker. Best of luck to you getting this issue resolved amicably. [Hotlink removed by Zillow moderator. Please see our Good Neighbor Policy for information.]
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December 27 2013
Quite simple...

Consult with your broker's legal counsel.  Then consider a "suit for non-performance," and the other options that a highly-skilled attorney will know.  

I wish you the very best! 
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December 27 2013
Hello Saw414,

I am curious to hear the outcome of your Closing Alamo.  I call it that because it appears both parties (Buyer and Seller) have drawn a line in the sand in asserting what they believe to be their rights. The only problem is that one of the parties - in this case probably the Seller - is dead wrong and will lose the Battle. For the Record, no Title or Escrow Company can "force" a Seller to close.  That is something only a Judge can do.  

As to the question about "What is the purpose of the Selling agent" if he cannot force a Seller to sell (and by extension - evict the owner from their home), I offer this:  If the Realtor did his/her job, the contract will give appropriate remedies to the buyer when the Seller is in Default.  I say "If", but unless the contract was written on a napkin, the proper protections are typically a matter of "Boilerplate".  Those remedies are generally give the option to the Buyer to either receive 100% of the Buyer's earnest money back, or if they choose, to pursue a suit for "Specific Performance".  That happens in a Court of Law.  The contract probably also calls for "Non-binding Mediation" between the Buyer and Seller unless the Buyer is pursuing an action for specific performance.

The purpose of the Contract in the first place is to create appropriate protections for both the Buyer and the Seller.  And they always address what the remedies are available for the person who has been defaulted upon.  It is written with the idea that a third party - in this case a Judge - can properly interpret and enforce the contract between the parties to the terms they both agreed on. The contract also generally states that the party that prevails in the suit is able to recapture all of their court costs, legal fees, and actual damages from the loser.  I would say that Saw is likely to win this battle, but it could take you 2 years and a lot of money to prevail, if the Seller decides to fight it out in the courts.

Let us know what happens.  Best of luck, and thanks for reading.
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November 04 2013
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Thanks everyone. I think the title company is forcing the seller to come to the table and provide the dock's. when we close we will not have to worry any more
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October 31 2013
So - based on the responses from the Realtors it appears that Realtors cannot help in this situation - so what is the purpose of the selling agent?

So what advice did your buyers agent give  you?  Are you buying without a buyers agent?

You have gotten yourself into a legal situation and we cannot give legal advice.  We can't see the document you signed.  We can't read the clauses.  It would be practicing law without a license for any Realtor to "tell" you what to do other than GET an attorney to assist you.

If you have a buyers agent it is their job to assist you to navigate this situation.  If you skipped that part - go directly to an attorney.
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October 31 2013
I see very good answers to the question posed.  How did the Realtors not help?
.

A Realtor is NOT a lawyer so they cannot help in that particular capacity.
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October 31 2013
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So - based on the responses from the Realtors it appears that Realtors cannot help in this situation - so what is the purpose of the selling agent?
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October 31 2013
I had the same situation come up this year. My seller did not want to close at the last minute. I basically talked to her, and said you signed a contract with me and with the buyer. If you do not close, the buyer will sue you and get a court order for you to sell the house and/or pay damages.. Although, I said I wouldn't sue her, if the other agent sues me.. then I would be forced to sue her as well for the lost commission.  Unless your house is now worth $50K more than the contract..you sell or be forced to sell and pay attorney's costs, commissions, damages, moving expenses, etc. etc. etc.. not worth it!!  Explain this to the Seller, offer another $2K and close the stupid deal. 
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October 31 2013
Depending on how your contract was written you can sue the seller for non-performance.
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October 31 2013
you have made efforts to resolve the issue through the brokers in the transaction, not the real estate agents, but the actual brokers, most of our contracts provided that you can go to mediation through the Board of Realtors. If that is not successfully or the seller is on willing to go to mediation, then you need to seek the advice of an attorney that deal specifically with real estate contracts. You don't have to go through mediation prior to contacting an attorney. But sila will not be a resource to resolve this matter.
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October 31 2013
You need to obtain Legal Advise not from this forum.  The seller has contractual obligations not only with your contract, but also the listing agreement with his agent.  He may be sued by his agent for loss of compensation, and you can sue for performance.
Either way, the seller will likely loose the fight.
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October 31 2013
 
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