Even in a strong market, it pays to have a professional on your side.
Today I want to tell you a story about a homeowner who sold one house to two different buyers. Let’s start at the beginning: I received a call from a guy who was looking to sell his house and looking to sell quickly. I came out, met with him, talked to him about the home’s value and what we thought the home could sell for.
I ended up bringing him an offer and he was ecstatic. We got the home under contract with a cash buyer and were ready to close. The next morning, I get a phone call from this gentleman and he tells me, “I think I messed up.”
It turns out that after we had already accepted the first offer, he called another person who was interested in the house to tell them it was no longer for sale. That person then told him that he couldn’t do that because he had already agreed to sell the home to this other gentleman.
It turns out that he had signed a contract without knowing it was actually a contract. At first, I wasn’t sure that it truly was a contract from a legal standpoint, but he did sign a piece of paper that agreed to sell his house for a price that was lower than what our cash buyer offered and a closing date that was much longer in the future than he needed.
At the same time, the “contract” was missing some components, so I took it to our attorney. She said that although this was a really terrible contract, it was a legally binding one. If he broke the contract, he was liable to get sued. We ended up terminating the contract with our cash buyer and told him to reach back out if anything changed.
The moral of the story is to be careful about everything you sign. When you’re selling an asset as large as your home, caution is the key. Unless you’re a real estate professional yourself, you should be hiring one to assist you with the sale. I know the market is good right now, and you may think you don’t need any advice or expertise in order to sell for top dollar, but there are always people out there looking to take advantage of you. Having an agent on your side will ensure that you’re protected. The potential legal headaches are just not worth it.
If you have any questions for us about selling your home, buying a home, or anything else related to real estate, don’t hesitate to reach out via phone or email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.