Pennsylvania  |  Real Estate Law

Legal Question

Asked on: 3/16/13, 10:52 am

We bid on a house and got a decent price. However, It needs many repairs that have to be done by us before the appraiser will approve the loan. Some of these repairs were going to be done by us, but they want contractors.

We feel that we are in over our heads now since we have to do repairs on a house we do not own. Our contract ran out with both the mortgage company and the realtor. The sellers live in another state and do all of their correspondence by regular mail which slows down the process. They have not even sent the first extension approval back from over a week ago.

Can we walk away without being sued by the current owners? Would we get back our deposit?

2 Answers


Answered on: 3/17/13, 1:32 pm by Justin Gearty

That entirely depends on what your contract says. I would highly suggest that you retain an attorney to review this for you.

If you don't have an attorney and would like to retain one, please feel free to contact me.

Justin C. Gearty Jr., Esquire

Owner and Managing Attorney

Gearty Law Offices

Phone: 717-490-6325

Email: Justin.Gearty@gmail.com

Website: www.GeartyLawOffices.com


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Law Office of Justin C Gearty Jr 1853 William Penn Way, Suite 26 Lancaster, PA 17601

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Answered on: 3/18/13, 10:44 am by Miriam Jacobson

Never make repairs on a property you don't own. You take on liability, and you lose whatever you put into it if the transaction doesn't settle. You can't borrow money from a lender to do work on a house you don't own.

Have a lawyer assist you in reviewing your contract and advise you about what options you have. With luck, you are still within the period that permits you to cancel based on condition of the property or failure to get a mortgage, if those are conditions for your closing. If they are not conditions, you may be stuck with, at a minimum, losing your deposit, or worse, being liable for the entire purchase price and possibly the seller's additional losses.

THIS RESPONSE IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE, SINCE I DO NOT HAVE ALL OF THE INFORMATION THAT WOULD BE REQUIRED, AND I DO NOT HAVE A REPRESENTATION AGREEMENT WITH YOU.

* If the answers to your question confirm that you have a valid issue or worthwhile claim, your next step should almost always be to establish a dialog with a lawyer who can provide specific advice to you. Contact a lawyer in your county or township.

* Another reason for contacting a lawyer is that it is often impossible to give a good answer in the Internet Q&A format without having more information. The unique circumstances of your situation and things that you may not have thought to mention in your question may completely change the answer. If you want to be sure that you have a complete answer to your question and an understanding of what that answer means, establish a connection with a lawyer who practices in the area of your concern.


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Law Offices of Miriam N. Jacobson 1900 JFK Blvd. Suite 1519 Philadelphia, PA 19103-1431

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