Unfortuneately, things like this do happen. I trust the change in your situation is material as opposed to a whimsical change in the direction the wind is blowing. The latter constitutes a betrayal of all the professional and their staff involved in this situation. Your change in situation must be significant and not just a matter of your convienence.
Your agent very likely craeted a profile of the buyer involved. This profile includes who the lender is, any consessions or assistance requested, downpayment amount and motivation for buying. If the purchase offer included Bank of America, Wells Fargo or Chase, FHA, minmal down payment and seller to pay a portion of closing costs, (or other contingencies suggesting buyer weakness) this can mean you are dealing with a very weak buyer. The chances are, Debra's suggestion will prove successful. There will also be the FIAT appriasal that can be leveraged to create a clean exit.
However, chooosing this path means the buyer willl be investing MONEY only to realize there is not good faith on the other side of the negotiations. This question right here on TRULIA, if traceable to you, can prove your intent not to sell. Nothing makes folks more letigious than betrayal and manipulation. You may want to take positive steps to avoid a relalitation environment.
You may consider having an appraisal completed. If the appraised value and the purchase offer are significantly different, you can choose to share this with the buyer and seek confirmation whether they can or are willing to pay the difference with cash. Some lenders won't allow this. No cash, and restrictivie lender can create an exist that can NOT be attributed to you.
Then comes the inspection report. If home is being sold 'As-IS' and the FHA appraisal reveals a safety defect....you have a clear exit. Rarely do I encourage having a safety violation on an inspection report. Are you paying attention? Missing hand rails or bedroom windows that don't open seem to qualifify.
My suggestion to you wouild be to be honest and show your cards. "I've had a significant change in my life and selling my home is no longer an option for me. I would ask you, the buyer, to release me from my committment to sell. I am grateful and tankful for your understanding and co-operation. I will gladly compensate you for any material costs you have incurred"
If the real estate professionals involved require you to pay full compensation...make them infamous.
Time is of the essence. The longer you wait to have a discussion with the buyer, the greater harm they endure.
Time to have a meet up with the real estate professional you have hired. Very rarely does anyone view a adversarial battle of opposing goals benefical to anyone. Seeking co-operation is the best path to getting co-operation.
Best of sucess
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, Fl
Move to the Front of the Line (FirstLookHomes.us)