I am so sorry!

Real Estate Agent with Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 PA License - AB067198

All sorts of things happen in real estate, and as agents we often tell clients that it isn't sold till it closes and to celebrate then.

I have also found that buyers always want to know why a property came back on the market when something does arise that prevents settlement. Buyers fear that it might the result of a home inspection, and if that buyer pulled out maybe they should not make an offer. 

Sometimes it is not the house's fault a sale falls apart, something else can prevent a buyer or seller reaching settlement or closing.

It can be the result  of buyer remorse, a redistricting by a school district, the township not allowing sub-division on a large property, or maybe not allowing for a garage to be built, potential from proximity of neighbors being on the Megan's Sexual predator List, a rise in interest rates causing the buyer to no longer be able to afford the mortgage, and as I mentioned before non payment or filing of taxes that now must be paid.

Older couple

I recently had a client interested in a home, it met their parameters and they wanted to know why the house had come back on the market. Calling the listing agent to ask some questions i added why did the house come back on the market? She went on to tell me how wonderful the house was, and how it had sold quickly before, but the buyer's wife had had a cardiac situation and had not survived. The buyer requested release from the contract and the seller had agreed.

Whilst the PA agreement of sale actually has a section dealing with situations like this and it requires heirs to go to settlement, it was very kind of the seller to allow the buyer to be released from the settlement and luckily for them the market is strong enough that the house will sell again very soon.


Posted by


Nick Vandekar
Nick is a Tredyffrin Easttown Residential and Commercial REALTOR selling The Main Line, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties.

Giving you the confidence to make
the right decisions.

92 Lancaster Avenue
Devon , PA 19333
Mobile: (610) 203-4543 [call or text me]
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If you are buying or selling on or around
Tredyffrin Easttown or along the Main Line, 
we can help you, contact us.

Comments (12)

Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543 - Time and loved ones are precious; when time is of the essence, we have to respect where others are coming from. Sometimes we don't know the answers. If we are lucky, we get the answers to other people's questions. And, unfortunately, assumptions or telling buyers what we think they want to hear are often wrong. Cancel assumptions from our way of thinking, is what I say. 

Nick, your post gave me goosebumps. Curious minds want to know why has it been on the market so long, why hasn't it sold, yada, yada, yada. To everything there is a reason. You nailed it with enlightenment.

Thank you, Nick for your entry into the Marching to a Solution |ActiveRain 2023 Challenge. I cherish advice like yours. 

Mar 14, 2023 09:28 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Nick. Sometimes sellers are moved to do what is right against the potential of profit. And, sometimes buyers are gracious that although not on legal footing to do so, the seller agreed to cancel the contract. Enjoy your day.

Mar 14, 2023 09:47 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate Services

Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543 while it may be a contractual obligation, I cannot imagine a seller requiring the buyer to close knowing a loved one had just died.  

It has happened once to me in my 20+ year career. I was the listing agent. The buyer's agent started to ghost me. Come to find out, he was stalling for time because the buyer's Dad had died. The plan was the buyer's parents would be living with her.  After the dad died they had a change of plans.  The sellers were more than happy to release the buyer. It was the right thing to do, IMHO.

Mar 14, 2023 10:33 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP

Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist - you are 100% correct. This is why judging and assuming are two words that need to be removed from our minds when communication stops unexpectedly. The reality is, perception is not always the reality like many people tend to believe. I'm glad you mentioned this. 

Mar 14, 2023 11:10 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

that's a very sad and unexpected reason to not reach closing, but goes to show we shouldn't assume there is something wrong with the house 

Mar 14, 2023 10:42 AM
Ed (Edward) Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

All contracts have defined dates and are expected to close. However when circumstance such as this arise there needs to be some flexibility as well. The strong market just created a little delay for the sellers.

Mar 14, 2023 12:11 PM
Hannah Williams
HomeStarr Realty - Philadelphia, PA
Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-820-3376

Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543 Great post as always with an understanding seller. 

Mar 14, 2023 12:27 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Nick this is a sad story and even though contracts are what they are...doing the right thing sounds a lot better to me than following the letter of the law.  I consulted on a home years ago, in a bad market. There was a contract in a short amount of time but I heard later from the listing agent that before they could close, the seller's husband passed away suddenly. I'm not sure what happened after that. 

Mar 14, 2023 07:33 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Nick - unfortunately, we hear and experience sad events as a part of real estate.  It only makes sense - it reflects everyday life.  

Mar 15, 2023 03:44 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, Nick... there are good people in this world as your story shows. 

Mar 15, 2023 05:34 AM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker/REALTOR® - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

There are so many different reasons why a house doesn't sell, often having nothing to do with the house. I had a deal die because the sellers were getting divorced and wouldn't sign the contract until some totally unrelated charge card bill had been paid. One spouse refused to pay and therefore they wouldn't sign, and my buyers opted not to wait.

As for the death of a buyer, I personally don't think the family should be required to purchase the home anyway. I'm glad the seller in the story above felt the same.

Mar 15, 2023 05:40 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Our contract is like that as well but I would suspect that in that type of scenario, most sellers would cancel the transaction and move on to another buyer.

Mar 15, 2023 05:52 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

The death of one of the parties always causes challenges.

Have a great day and an outstanding week.

Mar 16, 2023 08:55 AM