Can Developer force me to close contract?

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foghorn

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There are so many of us because the market was so hyped, I queued for Phase 1 of the development and missed out, then was encouraged by the agents to queue early for phase 2 and when I got there I was lucky to get one of the last ones. How could I loose!
Now the economic situation appears to be getting worse by the day. At this rate my family home is now at risk.
Sorry, but plenty of people warned about the fact there was a housing bubbles and that, house prices being at 12 times the average industrial salary, they were way overpriced. Not everyone was hyping them. Though admittedly on this forum, they were hyped more than in other places.
 

MOB

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1,122
"Which would lead one to the conclusion that they need to be protected. Couldn't the Law Society have insisted that the get out clauses of builders (eg. long delays in building) be curtailed and that the mortgage approval clause could not be deleted unless you were in a guaranteed job or were a cash buyer."

Hi Bronte. Not really, I'm afraid. The Law Society rightly took action to stamp out contract terms which were so unfair as to be unlawful, even though many consumers were prepared to go ahead and accept these terms rather than miss out on the property investment mania. But there is no way that you can stop people from being merely unwise. It is only obvious with hindsight that a long-stop closing date was doing a disservice to the buyer. Many buyers who signed contracts in 2002\2003\2004 and completed in 2004\2005\2006 must have been delighted and relieved to have 'got in' at a lower price. Indeed, many people in this situation 'flipped' their contracts for instant profits of three or four hundred percent (on their deposit) without ever completing a purchase. And if you think about it for a minute, the 'contract' you suggest would not be a contract at all: a buyer who wants out can always make sure that they are refused a mortgage. It would be more in the nature of an option in favour of the purchaser: no builder with any common sense would commit to building houses in such circumstances.

Where a particular consumer contract term is clearly unfair (no matter how the market goes) then it is possible to challenge it in court.

But you cannot really have a free-market economy without people also enjoying the freedom to make unwise decisions.
 

Rolaga

Registered User
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11
The part I find particularily unfair is that I signed the contract in April 2006 but the developer didn't sign it until June 2006. My solicitor says that the contract is dated from the date of the sellers signature, so they have until June 2009 to complete the building.

I don't expect any sympathy, what I would really like is some practical advice as to whether or not I have any options. Has anyone heard of developers negotiating with purchasers? After all if I cannot secure a mortgage they would have to sue me. This will involve costs (for me also, I know) and delays.
 
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Robin Banks

Guest
Now the economic situation appears to be getting worse by the day. At this rate my family home is now at risk.
Why should the developer give you even 1 cent off the contracted price?

If you already have a "family home", why were you buying the apartment? If you were buying it as an investment you possibly denied someone else the chance of a modest family home by using the equity you accumulated in your own family home as leverage against people without that advantage.

The developer has done absolutely nothing wrong here, assuming they complete by June 2009, and you are not worth one iota of sympathy.

Man up and start figuring out how to pay the developer what you agreed to, instead of trying to weasel your way out of your legal obligation.

Of course, if property prices had continued on their upward spiral, we wouldn't have this thread. The sheer brassneck cheek of people who deliberately entered into a futures contract by buying off the plans - then want to renege on that contract when it doesn't work out in their favour is mind boggling.
 

brigade

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54
Find the last reply overly harsh on Rolaga!

Granted, it probably wasn't the wisest move to buy off plans at such inflated prices 2/3 years before the apartment is built but does that justify having a go at someone who seems to be worried about being left homeless!!
 

Complainer

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Granted, it probably wasn't the wisest move to buy off plans at such inflated prices 2/3 years before the apartment is built but does that justify having a go at someone who seems to be worried about being left homeless!!
The OP stated that this purchase was an investment property, and was not to live in.
 

Complainer

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He said his family home is now at risk.
I missed that point, but to be honest, I'd take it with a pinch of salt. If the OP would like to post details of his overall financial situation (family home, outstanding mortgage, other assets, other mortgages) etc, then we might see if this is a serious claim.

If the OP was foolish enough to use his family home as security for an investment, then he really needs to deal with the problem himself.
 

simon44

Registered User
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17
If the contract was for the place to be finished a year earlier than agreed and you've lost your mortgage approval then it sounds like they've broken the contract and your scott free. At the very least you'll have the back-up of being able to say how you've lost your mortgage approval and that you've been forced to spend money on rent etc in the mean time. I'd bring them all the way to court if I had to.
 

Steve D

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189
If the contract was for the place to be finished a year earlier than agreed and you've lost your mortgage approval then it sounds like they've broken the contract and your scott free. At the very least you'll have the back-up of being able to say how you've lost your mortgage approval and that you've been forced to spend money on rent etc in the mean time. I'd bring them all the way to court if I had to.
You have missintrepreted the situatation entirely. If you look at post 4 you will see that the developer has until 9th June 2009 to complete the property.

It is just another situation where an "investor" thought that he was on a one way bet with properties only going to rise in value forever and then he tries to wriggle out of the contract when he find out that his investment will be worth less than he has contracted to pay for it, if it completed on time.
 

Bronte

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MOB;769196 But you cannot really have a free-market economy without people also enjoying the freedom to make unwise decisions.[/quote said:
This is very true. I'm trying to come to terms with people buying property at such a high value relative to a return on it and also with the amount of mortgages they could get relative to their salary. Did nobody do the sums, it seems not. I've been in the market for buying but still cannot find anything as it doesn't add up.
This doesn't help the OP who will just have to do his best to negotiate with the builder. I don't get the point about the builder signing two months later than you did. This can often happen, would be quite normal I would have thought, and during those two months you could have pulled out.
 

FKH

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244
Rolaga, I have dealt with developers who have dropped prices to complete with purchasers as they want to sell the property rather than spend years in court and maybe end up not getting a penny. If the property isn't built by the 9th June the next day I would have your solicitor send a letter saying contract at an end and asking for deposit to be returned. It won't happen but will give you a decent argument should the builder pursue you.
 

Rolaga

Registered User
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11
FKH, thank you so much for that positive and encouraging reply, it was particularly hartening to read after the comments from Robin Banks above. I also wonder if the builder would be willing to defer payment of part of the purchase price until the sale or rental markets improve.

Bronte, my point about the date of signing is that I think I should be able to cancel the contract on the third anniversary of my signing not the third anniversary of his signing.

Robin Banks, I have not asked for your sympathy, I know I got myself into this mess, but before you make harsh comments in future you should consider that you know nothing about the person with the problem. I am not willing to give any personal details except to say that I have a real problem.
 

FKH

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244
In terms of the contract date it will always be when the second party signs as there is no binding contract in place until both parties have signed.

I don't see the reason for such hostility from some posters. I would have sympathy for someone in your position (and would also have sympathy for the builder). Bottom line is that nearly everyone, FTB or investor buys with a mortgage and if the banks wont lend the amount that the purchaser thought their is very little that they can do as we are talking about large sums of money and will usually not the money personally.
 

Optimist

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46
In terms of the contract date it will always be when the second party signs as there is no binding contract in place until both parties have signed.
This is the case in England as far as I know because their signing procedure is different than ours.

Strangely that is not the case in this jurisdiction. In Ireland, a contract can be binding, in certain circumstances, against the party that signs even if other side has not signed yet. This topic has been the subject of much litigation. You should get independent legal advice on this issue.
 

FKH

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Contract for the sale of land is governed by the Statute of Frauds in Ireland. For a contract for the sale of land to be legally binding it must be signed by both parties.
 

Optimist

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For a discussion of when both parties become contractually bound (albeit under very different circumstances) see the Supreme Court judgment in Embourg Ltd v Tyler Group Ltd. There is some uncertainty here as to when the parties become bound to the terms of the contract.

Rolaga - I dont think that you would succeed in trying to have your signing date upheld as the date of the contract because technically you could have withdrawn your offer to buy the property up until the day that the developer signed....
 
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Robin Banks

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I am not willing to give any personal details except to say that I have a real problem.
I have a real problem with people bleating about their self inflicted problems.

They'll cry and they'll whinge and they'll moan, and eventually either they, or their developer, or their developer's bank will be bailed out by the rest of us for their collective greed and stupidity.

€7 an hour is the difference between 2,000 and 10,000 jobs in Limerick today. Ireland lost over 16,000 jobs in December alone.

Maybe some day people will join the dots between forcing up the cost of living for ordinary workers with a disgusting property bubble, and jeopardising the competitiveness of an entire economy.

You have no idea what it was like for the people on the other side of your bet for the last decade. Best of luck to you weaseling out of your contract.
 

FKH

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244
"€7 an hour is the difference between 2,000 and 10,000 jobs in Limerick today. Ireland lost over 16,000 jobs in December alone"

What does that have to do with the current thread? But seriously, are you telling me you would work for €3 an hour (or €80 less for an average week than social welfare would pay). I very much doubt it.

I think Embourg was booking deposits if I remember. Rolaga, the only date that matters is the date the developer signed and one part was returned to you. YOu could have pulled out up until they signed.
 

brigade

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54
You have no idea what it was like for the people on the other side of your bet for the last decade.
Please explain?
Do you really think that the problems with our economy are solely down to the property bubble?
Are the jobs lost in Limerick just a result of the property bubble?
 
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