I am a seller in Escrow – my life has changed for the better – can I get out of Escrow?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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I am a seller in Escrow – my life has changed for the better – can I get out of Escrow?

Want to back out of a sale of my house. I live in
My life has suddenly changed for the better. I
don’t want to sell my home now but am in
Escrow. Can I get out? Cancel?

Asked on July 1, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Alaska


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can only get out of the contract if--
1) There is a clause or provision in the contract allowing you to cancel, and you comply with any of the terms or requirements of that clause; or
2) The buyer breaches (violates) the contract in a material (important) way, such as by not being able to close.
Otherwise, the change in your life circumstances is completely irrelevant: contracts are enforceable even if it would be better for one of the parties to get out of the contract. If you refuse to sell, the buyer can sue you and seek a court order compelling the sale (called seeking "specific performance" of the contract), and/or seek what might be significant monetary compensation (called "damages") from you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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