Gary Frimann,  REALTOR and Broker (Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates)

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Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

I'm assuming you mean to void the contract. This Q may best be posed to an attorney, but laws change all the time, and contracts are binding according to the laws in place at the time they were executed. Having said that, you can get out of a contract pretty much anytime you want if you're willing to accept the consequences.

Jan 14, 2018 10:24 AM
Kenneth J. "Ken" Jones, Associate Broker
VRI Realty, Inc. - Metuchen, NJ
Premium Plus Real Estate Service

Gary Frimann Well, the first thing is, I think you're asking if the contract can be VOIDED, not AVOIDED.

Now that we've cleared that up, the answer is:

Unless there's a specific provision in a contract that says the contract can be voided due to a change in the tax law, it CANNOT legally be voided.

And, unless the buyer's financing source refuses to disqualify the buyer (for any reason, including changes in the tax law that may make the buyer unqualified), there's still no way to legally void the contract based on changes in tax law.

I'm NOT a lawyer and this is NOT legal advice.

Jan 14, 2018 11:25 AM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"Franklin MA Homes"

I think Candice A. Donofrio gave you the bottom line on that question with her last statement....

"you can get out of a contract pretty much anytime you want if you're willing to accept the consequences."

Jan 14, 2018 12:21 PM
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

I have not.  I doubt that would be a reason to back out of a purchase agreement ... most especially in our market when home prices are high and affordability is there. 

Jan 14, 2018 11:26 AM
Lynnea Miller
Bend Premier Real Estate - Bend, OR
Premier Real Estate Service in Central Oregon

Any contingency can be written into a purchase agreement and as long as all parties agree to it, a contract written which incorporates a contingency on the tax law can be valid.

Jan 14, 2018 10:41 AM
Fred Griffin
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

  Hi, Gary

      Any contract can be broken, but unless that is a contingency, you may need another reason.  See an attorney for legal advice, etc.


Jan 14, 2018 10:29 AM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

I doubt the law would define this event as "force majeure" that would entitle one to void a contract. Check your "material change" clause and prove that the tax law would indeed constitute material change.

Jan 14, 2018 10:28 AM
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg IL Area Real Estate

I'm sure there will be some bonehead that will use the excuse. I agree with you as it not really being one. If you expected a certain tax return & then it isn't there ... well?

Jan 14, 2018 02:33 PM
Sybil Campbell
Long and Foster REALTORS® 5234 Monticello Ave Williamsburg, Virginia - Williamsburg, VA
REALTOR® ABR, SFR, SRES Williamsburg, Virginia

I like the answer provided by Ken Jones, ASA, SCGREA.

Jan 14, 2018 01:54 PM
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

This is a question that needs to be answered by an attorney. 

Jan 14, 2018 01:18 PM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD
Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Follow the terms of the contract.

Jan 14, 2018 12:41 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

I think that a question for an attorney, and would liekly also depend where in the process you are. And there may be financial or other consequences.

Jan 14, 2018 12:02 PM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Hopefully it will be minimumal !

Jan 14, 2018 11:52 AM
Carol Williams
U.S.: I specialize in helping agents who have been in the business 2 years or less create a thriving business. - Wenatchee, WA
"Customized Mentoring & Marketing Services"

I think you mean "void" and not "avoid"? 

Jan 14, 2018 11:00 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

I do not think one can do that, Gary Frimann.

Jan 14, 2018 09:01 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Sometimes voiding a contract is as easy as making it no longer acceptable to the lender.

Check with your attny and your lender and they will have a better idea as to the status of the deal.

Jan 14, 2018 06:20 PM
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

What I know about contract law is that they are binding unless misrepresentation or fraud or a contingency of sale is present. Then it is voidable by the injured party or the one with the contingency.

Jan 14, 2018 04:33 PM
Susie Kay
Ultima Real Estate - Plano, TX
North Dallas Specialist

I would consult an attorney.

Jan 14, 2018 04:28 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

I would ask an attorney in your state.

One thing to consider that is often overlooked (and not what the media wants us to realize) - Say you currently deduct $20K in property taxes and next year, you'll only be able to deduct $10K. IT'S NOT THE $10K that the new tax bill is going to cost you; it's the rate of taxes that you pay. 


Jan 14, 2018 04:20 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Contract law plays by its own rules. It has nothing to do with current Tax etc

Jan 14, 2018 04:08 PM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

I'm not aware of the new tax laws harming any sales out here.  Changes in tax law would not get you your EMD back though, if you cancelled for that.

Jan 14, 2018 04:08 PM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

Probably not but to paraphrase Paul Simon, there must be 50 ways to leave a contract.

Jan 14, 2018 01:46 PM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

I have no idea

Jan 14, 2018 11:57 AM
Gary Frimann
Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates - Gilroy, CA
REALTOR and Broker

I agree with all the comments.  I was just wondering if  basically if anybody had a transaction go south because of the new tax law...  I could possibly see somebody who was going to take out a $1M mortgage (now limited to $750K) or getting their property tax partially taxed as it is over the $10K limit.  I was also kind of wondering if loan underwriters have factored that in, and has anybody had a sure thing loan go south.  Thanks for your answers!


Jan 14, 2018 10:50 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Legal question. Read the contract

Jan 15, 2018 02:38 AM
Mike Rock
Complete Design - Granite Bay, CA
Granite Bay Luxury New Construction...For Less

actually, a loan can and will be denied on some future tax returns/ net income because of the states that now you have a 10k max deduction. so yes.

Jan 14, 2018 08:55 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Depending on some state laws and how the contrac is written.

Jan 14, 2018 06:56 PM
Joan Cox
Metro Brokers - House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

I would hope those bases would be covered before writing.  

Jan 17, 2018 06:38 AM
Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula
House Match Inc - Poway, CA
Excellent Sales and Property Management

Maybe if the taxes will exceed the $10K mark on a personal property and they are still within the contingency period, they could back out sayingt hey wont be able to deduct all the property taxes.

For investment proeprties, I dont see much of a change that would affect anything.

Jan 15, 2018 09:43 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ

Candice A. Donofrio nailed this one!

Jan 15, 2018 08:37 AM
Richard Bazinet /MBA, CRS, ABR
AZuRE Team - Realty ONE Group - Scottsdale, AZ
Phoenix Scottsdale. Sellers, Buyers & Relocations

I'm unsure what you are asking... or don't quite understand your question.

Jan 15, 2018 06:44 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

I don't know.

Jan 15, 2018 05:55 AM
Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041
ReMax Realtec Group - Palm Harbor, FL
Making FLORIDA Real Estate EZ

Not in my wheelhouse.

I do like the distinction made between 'voiding' and 'avoiding.'

Sounds like the best legal firm AND deepest pockets will prevail.

Jan 15, 2018 05:39 AM
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

A contract is a contract and unless there is a clause it can be voided due the tax law, most likely it can not. Now the tax law will benefit far more than it will make pay more. The way it has been shown is those with the mansions wil pay more. Isn't that what the left wanted?

Jan 15, 2018 05:36 AM
Mary Yonkers
Alan Kells School of Real Estate/Howard Hanna Real Estate - Erie, PA
Erie/PA Real Estate Instructor

See comments by Ken Jones, ASA, SCGREA 

Jan 15, 2018 04:20 AM