How To Cancel a Listing or Purchase Contract

How to cancel a listing

Wondering how to cancel a listing or purchase contract? Below is a previous post on another site written by partner Elizabeth Weintraub. What is so interesting — it’s as relevant today as when written, more than a decade ago. These questions are asked often by the public when visiting our website about: Sacramento Real Estate.

“It’s too bad that you can’t just rip up a contract to terminate an association or an agreement, but that’s not how it works. To find out if your contract can be canceled, the first step to take is to read the contract. Contracts typically contain a provision for cancellation.

Many contracts are bilateral, meaning a promise for a promise. If the other party is not living up to its promise, it’s possible you may have grounds for cancellation.

I give my clients personal guarantees that if at any time they are unhappy with my services or if they feel I am not performing as agreed, I will cancel the contract, whether it’s a listing agreement or a buyer’s broker agreement.

Because I am not a party to the purchase contract — at least not in California — I cannot cancel a purchase agreement. Only buyers and sellers (or the court) can cancel a purchase agreement. But purchase contracts contain provisions for cancellation and, in most cases, the buyer can get her deposit back. I’ve heard of buyers these days walking away from signing loan documents and canceling the contract at closing. The buyers either got cold feet, found a better property to buy or simply changed their minds. Of course, THAT leaves the buyer’s earnest money deposit at risk, but for some, it’s not enough to worry about.

If you require legal advice, however, by all means, contact a real estate lawyer, because real estate agents are not licensed to give legal advice.

Here is more about how to cancel a contract.

— Elizabeth Weintraub

If you are interested in selling or buying a home, we are here to help you achieve your goals in real estate; call Weintraub & Wallace Realtors at RE/MAX Gold, 916-233-6759.

elizabeth weintraub
Weintraub & Wallace

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