If our home builder is trying to get more money out of us before they will close. is that extortion or something?

UPDATED: Dec 19, 2011

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If our home builder is trying to get more money out of us before they will close. is that extortion or something?

Our building contract has an allowance of $17,000 for an additional 800 sq ft. We were told that amount would get us to the sheetrock stage and we would pay the rest out of pocket to finish the rooms which we thought would be things like flooring a painting. Because this area is in the “attic space” or gables, they said it would be much cheaper to build. Once we reached the sheetrock stage, we were asked for $31,000 to complete the space which was much more than we had anticipated. No new contract was signed. We came up with $25,000 and now they want $22,960 more or we can’t close.

Asked on December 19, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Alabama


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You need to carefully read the written contract you have with your contractor for the work of improvement being done to the property that you want to close escrow on in that its terms and conditions control the obligations owed to you by the contractor and vice versa in the absence of conflicting state law.

If the contractor agreed to do the work for a set price in writing, he or she is obligated to do so. I suggest that you consult with a real estate attorney about the situation you are in to ascertain if the contractor is bound to the set price presumably bid to do the work or is entitled to a greater amount.

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