Best of luck,
Don Gockel, Keller Williams A.V.
This happened in a home that I sold to an investor. Instead of blowing the sale, the bank paid for all new appliances. Your situation is more serious.
They deserve jail.
Scott Miller, Realty Associates, Boca Raton, FL
This seller seems like a real pain. The home is his property but you are dealing with extortion. You are entitled to a final walk through before closing and if one thing is removed I would not close. I may have someone at the property durring closing to make sure that nothing leaves. After closing the property is yours and the current owner has no right to it.
Ps try to get in writing from the seller how much they want and what they are going to take if you do not give them the money. If they are dumb enough to try to shake you down they may be dumb enough to put it to paper.
If he's agreed to these standard short sales terms in order to benefit from shedding debt via short sale, then you are right - it is unethical and as John says, potentially fraudulent. Including, if you participate, potentially fraudulent by YOU.
From a doh! standpoint, I also don't get how he can tell you that you have to pay him $25,000 post escrow closing. At that point, wouldn't it be YOUR house, such that if he tried to gut it, you could have him arrested? Or does he get to retain possession after close of escrow? (which shouldn't happen in a short sale in any event, there is no incentive for him to ever get out!)
I'd suggest calling an attorney ASAP.
You may need to get an attorney involved but at the very least, you must make sure that your agent and the sellerâ€™s agent are both fully aware of what is going on. Neither of them can participate in the sellerâ€™s plan of action nor can they turn their heads and ignore the threats.
If the lender is aware of the sellersâ€™ plans, the lender will not approve the transaction or they will cancel any approval that has been issued.
By the way, advice to call the police is poor advice. If the seller still owns the house, he can remove anything he wants. It is his. Of course, causing waste and destruction to the property is a violation of his loan agreement with the bank so, again, my advice is to let the lender know of this sellerâ€™s plans.
In the endâ€¦this is not the house not the seller with which you want to be involved.
The purchase agreement automatically lists a bunch of items that need to STAY, particularly ATTACHED FIXTURES
Attached fixtures ARE: Sinks, garage doors, cabinets, front door, even the dishwasher & stove are considered attached fixtures.
VERY IMPORTANT: 1st ask for a COPY of the Short Sale approval letter. (this will have the phone number or contact info. on it for the Closing Dept. at the bank) Once you have this letter (which also has the sellers loan # on it, call the closing department & say this:
" The seller is demanding $25k from me or he's going to rip the place apart & remove Attached fixtures like (name the items) according to my agent he'd be doing something called "Bad Faith Waste". Can you please produce a letter quickly to let him know that if he does this you will sue him for damages to the property" (((then go on to say that you will back out of the deal & don't know of another buyer that will pay X price for the property after the seller rips the place apart, cuz gosh knows what else he'll damage"
As you're speaking to the bank & the seller has or still might take these items, demand that the bank pay for ALL of your closing costs OR agree to reduce the price by whatever the amount is for replacing what this owner plans to take.
Sellers don't understand that the bank CAN place a lien on them personally or issue a type of judgment for destroying I.E. ripping out everything that THEY think is personal property for the amount of the replacement cost.
These are my opinions, but if you speak with an attorney they may also have some other creative ideas on how to go about this.
Yes, my colleague Richard is correct - if you are using the CAR purchase agreement, the seller is required to deliver the property at closing in the exact same condition as of the date of acceptance. Unless the $25,000 was agreed to in writing, the seller cannot force that condition.
Good luck with your situation!