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Real Estate: Wisconsin/Help! Struggling with Contract issues!


My husband and I recently sold our home and also put in an offer on a potential house.  We had the home inspection done last Tuesday as per our inspection contingency. Along with the home inspector, we sent in a licensed plumber to look in the plumbing for tree roots (it's a common problem where we live and thought it would be a good idea just in case).  As a result of our home inspection:

Tree roots were found and need to be addressed ($500).
The home inspector found foundation issues to which he brought in a licensed foundation expert; the cost of fixing the foundation defects was quoted at $3600.

My husband and I, of course, want the sellers to fix these defects before our closing date of 7/1/2013.  They countered us with wanting us to pay for the plumbing, creating an escrow of $3600 for us to fix the foundation on our own and also wanted to raise our purchase price by $1000. ???

Of course we countered saying we want all defects fixed on their dollar/time before we move in, and we also wanted the purchase price reduced down to $150,000 (from $163,000) since the assessment of the house in 2012 was $147,900.  

We are now being told that we might be sued for breach of contract??  And that we can't just get out of this whole thing without the threat of being sued.  Can someone please explain this to me?  I thought that if we couldn't come to an agreement on what needs to be done, then the contract is killed and all parties are released.  Why did we put in a home inspection contingency if we suddenly lost our protection from it?  

We are to the point where we just want to forget about this house and move on.  The sellers never got a home inspection when they bought the house, so why should we be suffering from their poor choice?

Are we in the wrong?

 My first question would be...when you wrote the offer did you give the Sellers "the right to cure " ?   Real estate is about compromise....the foundation issue is a big one...and you could walk away just based on that. It sounds like both you and Sellers have a sour taste for the whole transaction.
  The Sellers will now have to disclose these issues to any potential buyer with an amendment to the real estate condition report.
  I would think a reasonable compromise would be they fix the foundation with a company providing a minimal 10 year warranty and you split the cost of the root removal either as a credit or cash contribution to remedy the problem.
   If you are not wanting to my view...the foundation issue is enough for you to give them a cancellation and mutual release and have your earnest money returned in full.

Real Estate: Wisconsin

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Sally K. & David L. Hanson, ABR, CDPE, e-Pro


Residential, investment and commercial real estate. Certified Distressed Property Experts (CDPE) experienced in Short Sales.


Involved in many phases of real estate since the 80's including investment, remodeling, design, buying, selling, special training in real estate for seniors, relocation and short sale certified.

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