Can a buyer change terms just days before closing due to thievery in the building?

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Can a buyer change terms just days before closing due to thievery in the building?

Settlement is scheduled for the sale of my triplex (as is) in 2 days. Today, after inspection by the buyer it was found that the building has been looted. Buyer now wants to drop purchase price by $7500. What is my legal recource for this?

Asked on August 16, 2011 Pennsylvania

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If there has been known damages to the triplex before close of escrow and the purchase agreement does not mention repairs for such or allocation of any insurance monies, it is well within the buyer's rights to want to extend escrow' close and negotiate new terms to resolve any damages to the unit before he or she takes legal title.

The rartionale is that when the buyer made the offer for the triplex, he or she did not bargain for a damaged triplex in the offer since the damage occured after the parties went into contract.

If you are the seller, you should immediately make a claim to your insurance carrier about the damage and get a written estimate for the repair and begin negotiating with the seller on what needs to be done to close escrow. Potentially you could assign to the buyer the insurance proceeds for the units' repairs without having to drop the price. Or, you could drop the sales price and keep the insurance proceeds. Make sure any changes to the purchase agreement is in writing.

Good luck.


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