Auctioneer must pay €1m after failing to buy historic house

This answers a perennial pin question concerning what happens if someone fails to complete a contract to purchase a property *after *signing contracts (and giving a 10% deposit) …

So to conclusively answer the question, you are liable for the difference between what you agreed to pay for it and what it eventually sold for.

Note : temene has this article in the Loftus Hall price change thread, but I thought it warranted it’s own thread because it answers a question that pops up frequently.

Thanks for posting that Mr. Anderson.

It is indeed an important posting.

There are few exceptions to the above unless there are massively important other circumstances:

  1. Flawed Auction Contract or Conduct - highly unlikely due to the nature of these contracts being in place for years and years and well tried and tested and even a handless muppet could hold an auction and not get it wrong.
  2. The seller agrees to let the buyer off the hook. This has happened in a local authority sale that I was interested in in Cork City not too long back.
  3. The seller is unwilling to take the matter to court (usually the only way to secure a judgment (whatever about funds for same)) for political, familial or other some such type of community or other reasons. See also number 2 above.

Pretty amazing, given the level of forgiveness in the air at the moment. If it sold for more than they contractually agreed could he then try to excercise a right over those proceeds?
Seriously doubt it…

He had already repudiated the contract by failing to complete the purchase. He couldn’t try to rely on it later if the house sold for more than agreed at auction.

  1. If the vendor is not ‘‘ready willing and able’’ to close the contract when they have served a closing notice the contract can be rescinded even when both parties have signed. Although you don’t have to be able to close when you sign the contact you do when you issue a closing notice, if your not able to close, the other part can rescind the contract. Supreme court ruling Tyndarius Ltd. v O’Mahony in 2003

Thanks for the info. I should have framed that question a bit better… So if they contract is in place, the seller then broke the agreement by selling higher to another individual what then?

He signed a contract. He is an auctioneer WHO SHOULD KNOW what that means.

What an auctioneer from Gort wanted with a large historic pile in Wexford I’ll never know but I suspect he thought he could flip it to a bunch of Canny McSavvies in South Galway who would build a Capella or Hilton or Marriot or a much needed :nin Ritz Carlton down there just like Dunboy Castle …remember that one. :smiley:

Sure you couldn’t possibly lose could you. ???