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shausaman, Both Buyer and Seller in Carter Park, Fort Wo...

If closing date is missed due to fault of seller because of termite inspection and buyer was ready, can seller enforce $100/day penalty of $2400?

Asked by shausaman, Carter Park, Fort Worth, TX Thu Jan 30, 2014

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The previous response is correct in that you need to read the contract. Typically a termite report and termite clearance are conditions of the sale. If they are in the contract, the seller must provide you with a report, and give you clearance from the licensed pest control operator prior to close of escrow. If the seller has failed to do this, he has not fulfilled his obligations, and is in breach of contract. Even if there were a clause in the contract for a penalty if you fail to close on the scheduled date, it would only be enforceable if you were at fault.The seller could not penalize you because of his own failure to perform. You should have given the seller a notice to perform regarding termite clearance, and more importantly should be talking to your own agent about this problem. Why isn't he on top of this? Your agent and his broker should be talking to the seller's agent and should resolve this.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 31, 2014
I agree with the others - refer to the contract. If there is a per diem it's a slam dunk. If not, it often ends up in a game of chicken - who wants to close it faster more. You can hold off closing till the reimburse you, and that may work as they probably want the money from the sale more than you need to move in right away, but I would talk with your agent first and potentially an attorney second to find out what your rights are in relation to the contract and go from there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 31, 2014
Shausaman,
If it's in the contract then yes. If it's not, it comes down to whatever you negotiate. Review your contract and see if that's included or if there is some language that makes it void if the reason for the delay is the seller's fault.
It may come down to what an attorney who reviews everything suggests, but before you go there read the contract. Once you fully know the terms of what you signed, discuss with an attorney if you don't want to pay it. Just decide quickly so you can still buy the house if you want to.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 30, 2014
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