Cash is king in Struisbaai

A cause for concern is the casual attitude an increasing number of homebuyers are exhibiting towards sale agreements or the suspensive conditions these contain – even though they can be sued for damages if they renege on these contracts.

So says Berry Everitt, CEO of the Chas Everitt International property group, who notes that all too often these days, buyers seem to believe that they can disregard the contact they have signed and walk away from the deal just because they “changed their minds”.

And he points out that although home sellers in such cases may have recourse to the courts to claim damages, that is likely to be a costly and arduous process, while the immediate reality for them is likely to be substantial financial loss.

“For example, they may have already bought another home themselves and find themselves now having to make two home loan payments every month. They will also be faced with additional holding costs on the property they thought they had sold, such as municipal rates.

“And they may even have to pay the attorney handling the transfer for any work done to date – because even though most property sale agreements make provision for the buyer to pay all the costs associated with transfer of ownership, the attorney who handles this transaction actually represents the seller.”

Writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, he says that such a prospect underlines the importance for home sellers of dealing only with reputable estate agents of long-standing, who will ensure not only that potential buyers are properly “qualified”, but also that they fully understand the nature of sale agreements and take them seriously.

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