What is my recourse if the buyer wants to back out of our deal?
Question Details: The offered and I accepted price. The inspection was fine and the appraisal was for the sale price. However, now the buyer wants to back out. Can they? If not, can I sue?
They can only legally get out of the sale if one or more of the following happens:
1) You violate your obligations (e.g. can't or won't close when required).
2) You committed fraud, or lied about something important (like flooding).
3) There is some provision or clause in the contract allowing them to terminate the deal under these circumstances, and they fully comply with it.
4) The sale becomes impossible due to something the government does (e.g. eminent domain; zoning change, so the property can't be used for what it was being bought for) or destruction/loss of the property (tornado, fire, etc.).
Otherwise, they are locked into the transaction. If they breach (refuse to go through with it), at a minimum, you can keep the earnest money or deposit; if your provable losses exceed the amount of the deposit (e.g. you had already bought or rented a new home, and end up having to "carry" and pay for this home, too, for 6 or 7, etc. months before you can sell it again, incurring large tax, mortgage, insurance, and maintenance costs), you may be able to sue for those surplus losses, too.