What can a home seller do when the buyer wants to delay the closing?


What can a home seller do when the buyer wants to delay the closing? Can a home buyer delay the closing? Must I give my buyer a closing extension? Listen as Attorney Tom Olsen explains! 


Chris: Hey. I’m a contractor, I’m selling a piece of property with a house on it and my realtor called me the other day and he said, ‘’We can close in 30 days. We sing the contract saying that we can close in 30 days.’’ Now, she contacted me and said, ‘’Hey, we might need more time.’’ The problem I have is it cost me money to hold this property, I have a mortgage, and I’m paying taxes and insurance on it. So, every month that I hold it, it costs me more money.

Attorney Tom Olsen: Yes, Chris, I don’t get it. Are you buying or selling? 

Chris: I’m selling.

Attorney Tom Olsen: And so, your buyer is delaying your closing, in other words?

Chris: Correct. And it’s costing me and we have a contract with a $2000 deposit on it. So, my thoughts are I should probably contact him back and say, ‘’Listen, this is very hard to hold it. This is costing me x amount of dollars.’’

Attorney Tom Olsen: All right. So, Chris, your choices here are limited; number one, if they cannot close on time you certainly have a right to say that the deal is off, now you got to start looking for another buyer, now you’re talking about months and months. That’s not so smart. 

Sometimes when you’re in a situation where your buyer wants you to delay closing what you may negotiate something in return for that and that is make their $2000 deposit to be non-refundable and have it actually dispersed to you so you don’t have to go through that hassle anymore and possibly that if you have your buyer really wants to have it extended you can ask for additional terms like additional money down, something along those lines, or even they pay you a per diem for the delay. So Chris, all those would be good options to you, I hear what you are saying and I do think there are some options available to you that I would suggest that you pursue.

Hey, you’re welcome to call us next week if you need some more information about that.