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Breaking A Real Estate Contract

Ask the Real Estate Lawyer: Real Estate Law Q&A

REM #LAW 734

By Ilyce R. Glink and Samuel J. Tamkin

Summary: A ThinkGlink reader signed a contract to sell his land but would now like to back out of the deal. Ilyce explains that once you sign a document, even if you didn't understand it, you are obligated to fulfill the deal.

Q: I recently signed a contract to sell some land that I own. Since that time, I discovered a clause in the contract that was not explained to me by my Realtor. Can I break this contract and not sell my property to this buyer.
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A: You have a duty to understand what you are signing. Realtors are real estate brokers and salespeople, but they are not attorneys. In many states, attorneys are not used in real estate purchases. In those states that don’t use attorneys, many Realtors do an outstanding job explaining documentation to buyers. It seems that you are in a state that doesn’t use real estate attorneys.

Unfortunately, your Realtor’s “failure” to explain information contained in your purchase and sale agreement does not excuse you from your obligation to honor its terms.

Please consult with a local real estate attorney for more details.

Samuel J. Tamkin is a Chicago-based real estate attorney. Ilyce R. Glink’s latest book is 50 Simple Steps You Can Take To Sell Your Home Faster and For More Money In Any Market. If you have questions for them, write: Real Estate Matters Syndicate, PO Box 366, Glencoe, IL 60022 or contact them through Ilyce’s website




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