Seller is not completing repairs on time, what can we do?

Asked by divergoes, Stockton, CA Thu May 2, 2013

Currently trying to close on a forclosure. Seller has agreed to fix the non-op pool, but they are not completing the repairs. We are on our third extension because of this. They agreed to do the work over a month ago. What can we do to get this closed? Is there a way to force the seller to do the work in a timely manner? We have already filed an adendum stating that they need to finish the agreed work. Help! This is going on and on and on. Not sure my agent knows how to deal with it.

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Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Fri May 3, 2013
This is really on your Agent:
He has two avenues that he can pursue:
He should have already consulted with his Broker; I'm assuming that he hasn't.
He could also talk to the CAR Legal Hot Line: He should know that too.
You could also have your Attorney draft a "letter"; everyone hates to get a "letter" from an Attorney: This may cost a couple hundred, but probably worth it.
What is the wording on your PURCHASE AGREEMENT concerning remedies and solutions?
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Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Fri May 3, 2013
The fact that this is a "foreclosure" drastically increases the degree of difficulty for requested repairs. It's too often the case that the lenders just don't hear or even care about your needs and operate on their own snail like schedule comprised of red tape, lost documents, and the left hand not knowing what the right one is doing.

Your agent's sense of feeling helpless is not an uncommon one. You are correct, this has gone on far too long. This may come down to considering two positions, one of taking a hard stand and issuing a deadline ultimatum or continuing to ride this out and hoping they will sometime wake up.

If you take the stance of a deadline ultimatum and clearly state to the lender that you are prepared to "walk away" if this deadline is not met, it could come down to living with your decision and moving on.

Unfortunately, this may be the language eventually heard or ignored!

Good luck,

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Walter 'Skip'…, Agent, Brea, CA
Fri May 3, 2013
When you say foreclosure, are you talking about a REO? If so, it often takes the bank awhile to get the work approved and done. I had a REO that was suppose to close in December but didn't close until February waiting for seller to complete repairs. Just keep pushing. If the seller is not a bank and is losing their home, they might not have the money to repair. Is there any equity where you can amend escrow to withold the amount for repairs? Then you can then fix it after close. If there is no equity, and the seller cannot afford to fix, you would probably have to sue for performance.
Good luck,
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