Home Buying in 94127>Question Details

Gigantes888, Home Buyer in San Francisco, CA

Earnest Deposit Dispute buying residential property in San Francisco. Will I be able to get it back?

Asked by Gigantes888, San Francisco, CA Fri Nov 9, 2012

I entered into escrow to purchase residential property in SF on August 20th and was set to close within 30 days on September 21, 2012. We
(buyer) were all set to close, signing the loan docs and our lender was set to fund until the title company put a hold to everything because the seller wasn't able to sign yet. Seller's lender won't release payoff instructions to Title. I waited patiently for over three weeks. My agent sent a Demand to Close Escrow on October 16th. Nothing was heard back other than acknowledgement of receipt so we decided to cancel escrow sending the "Cancellation to Cancel Escrow" and requested our earnest deposit back on October 22nd.
The seller's agent is disputing that we are not entitled to this deposit.
Because our loan docs technically expired (Oct 15th) before the Demand to Close Escrow was issued on October 16th, the DCE is invalid. The buyer wouldn't be able to perform within 3 days and issued the DCE in bad faith. Also funds were not in escrow yet.

Help the community by answering this question:


In reading through your description, my first question is: how is your agent handling this situation and issue? What has the agent discussed with you regarding this? And have both your agent's broker and real estate attorney been consulted?

Hope your situation clears speedily with the right people involved.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 10, 2012
I think it's a good idea to get your agent's broker to speak with their agent's broker and see if things can't be worked out.

Although I am not an attorney, if it can't be resolved that way my understanding of contract law is that they require that all parties act in good faith to fulfill their end and it doesn't sound like the sellers did this from your rendition.

If you can't work it out with the brokers involved you will need to speak with a real estate attorney.

Sorry you are going through this - not fun.

Best Regards,

Lance King/Owner-Managing Broker
DRE# 01384425
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
If you are asking this question on trulia, I fear you may not be receiving the attention and advice need from your agent and the brokerage. This needs to be immediately handled by the managing brokers on both sides of the transaction. Beyond that, any action or resolution will greatly depend on the specifics of your contract with the seller. This is not legal advice and should not be considered as such. I wish you the best of luck.

Oggi Kashi
Broker Associate, Paragon Real Estate Group CA DRE 01844627
All data from sources deemed reliable but subject to errors and omissions, and not warranted.
Web Reference: http://www.oggikashi.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
From the time line you've presented it is clear that you need to find an attorney and get very aggressive in extracting yourself from this transaction.
My opinion from your description, your agent (and supervising broker/manager) should have been working with legal counsel long before this point. As soon as the seller's documents were late they should have been getting things lined up to extract you if the other party failed.
The escrow company can't take any action unless it is agreed upon by both parties. It has to remain neutral. Your steps now need to show the other party that cooperation, returning your money or transferring title, is the best and least expensive option. In other words damages when you win your case will far exceed the pittance they are claiming they can keep.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 13, 2012
Jed Lane, Real Estate Pro in San Francisco, CA
As others have mentioned here, your agent should have contacted their firm's attorney already. If not, that should be something that should be done immediately. If you have your own real estate lawyer then contacting them is very important especially so late in the game.

Best of luck to you and sorry for this unfortunate situation.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
I am sorry you are involved in this huge mess. At this point your real estate agent should consult their company attorney, and you should consult your own real estate attorney on what the next step to take is.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
That's a tough question. You may not be able to unilaterally cancel the transaction. You should talk to a real estate attorney about it.

Was this a short sale? If so, there should be time frames within the contract in which you could get out if they do not perform.

A lot of a contract is good faith, so a real estate attorney is your best bet.

Good luck.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
Gigantes888: What did you realtor advise you?
Did you call the CA Dept. of Real Estate for help?
Did you call a good real estate attorney?

Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2012
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2016 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer