Sara is shown Olsonís house which she likes but has to consult with the husband before she can make her final mind. Sara and Olson make an option to contract whereby Olson promises to keep the house for Sara for one month ending January 31, 2012. The house was on offer for $230,000. On January 16 Olson got an irresistible offer from a rich corporation who after learning of the option to buy deal were willing to pay $250,000. Olson took the offer and quickly closed on the deal. Sara wrote a letter to Olson promising to take the house at $230,000 which letter reached Olson on January 28. She got not a very nice reply. Advise Sara.
1 Answer from Attorneys
Sarah may be out of luck unless she sues Olson, but even that may or may not work depending upon the historical details and contractual language in the option to purchase document, neither of which you have provided to me. Sarah has many options when she sues including monetary damages, rescission/restitution, or specific performance. However, the apparent final sale to the new buyer complicates the specific performance option if he does not want to give the property back, since he may qualify as a "holder in due course," who may not have had any notice of Sarah's claim when he took title. This might protect him from the suit. Sarah therefore needs to decide whether she is prepared for such a court battle, can afford it, or how badly she wants the house, as opposed to money damages. My answer does not automatically make me your attorney, so you need to consult with your own attorney before acting upon any of my comments and may contact my office at 333 Main St, Racine, WI 53403, 262-633-3090, during business hours, or see me on the web at www.jayknixonlaw.com. Also see 25 years of my answers to consumer questions at http://www.lawguru.com/answers/atty_profile/view_attorney_profile/jknixonAttorney answers may contain advertising materials.