Log In   ·   Become A Member

Finding The Able Buyer: Hamptons Real Estate Brokers Avoid Sales Disasters

John A. Viteritti

  |   2 Comments · Print Article

The unique interiors of this ten bedroom, twelve and two-half bath house were custom designed by the Alyse Ruth Design Group, who personally selected all of the extraordinary materials. The property, listed by Vincent Horcasitas of Saunders for $10.8M, also features a three-car garage and deeded dock access to Mecox Bay. (Courtesy Photo)

When it comes to the multi-million dollar homes in the Hamptons real estate market, issues not addressed at the proper time and in the proper manner may prove problematic in selling and buying a home. One such issue has to do with property transfers. Typically, when the real estate broker is representing the seller, the broker establishes at the listing appointment the terms the buyer must satisfy to meet the definition of "ready, willing, and able buyer." The broker should also establish the seller's obligations to the buyer.

Previous articles have covered the subjects of mortgage contingencies, certificates of occupancy, etc. One that is no less critical is when the purchaser will be able to pay the sum of money due at closing and when the seller will be prepared to surrender occupancy. A full-price offer, contingent upon the sale of the buyer's existing property, may not be as desirable as a lower price offer where the ability of the buyer to close is not contingent on the sale of their existing property. Conversely, a seller whose ability to surrender occupancy is contingent upon finding a replacement property may not be an attractive prospect to a purchaser.

This issue will be incorporated in the contract, but the broker addresses it before the attorneys become involved and the contract is prepared. Failure to address this critical issue could prevent the transaction from moving forward. The language of the contract should only formalize what the parties to the contract understood and agreed to at the time of offer and acceptance.

Ordinarily, the contract will specify where and when the closing, or transfer of title, will take place. For instance, the closing would take place at the seller's attorney office on or about a particular date. The phrase "on or about" implies that if, for "good cause," either party were not able to close on that date, the other party would agree to close on another date without considering the party requesting the postponement to be in breach of contract. This is the preferred arrangement if it is not essential that either party must close on a specific date. For example, the seller has to close on a property he is purchasing with the proceeds of the sale of his existing home the very next day. Or, if the buyer has to vacate their existing property on a certain date and would have nowhere else to go. Under these circumstances, the contract may read, "time is of the essence." This means that if either party were not able to close on that date, the other party could hold that party in breach of contract subject to all of the consequences as stated in the contract for breach.

Obviously, this is not a situation either party would want to confront. Whether the situation can be resolved will often depend on the circumstances and the willingness of the parties involved. What is clear, the broker plays a vital role in preventing this situation from developing if these issues are clarified before bring the seller and buyer together.

John is a St. John's University graduate, licensed Real Estate Broker, DOS Certified Instructor, and real estate consultant. He previously taught at NYU, LIU, and The Cook Maran Real Estate School, which he helped found. www.johnaviteritti.com

Guest (John A. Viteritti) from Hamptons.com says::
A commission is earned when the broker has brought about a meeting of the minds or produces a ready, willing, and able buyer prepared to meet all of the seller's terms. There is numerous case law to support this.
Nov 10, 2013 8:39 pm

Guest (Amy Beth Stern) from Southampton says::
In New York State, a commission is earned when an agent brings a willing and able buyer. Have you ever heard of or witnessed a scenario when a real estate broker or agent demanded a commission for bringing willing and able buyer when the seller backed out? Amy Beth Stern, Hamptons
Nov 5, 2013 2:00 pm


Submit Your Comment

Please note, you are not currently logged in. Your comment will be submitted as a guest.
To submit your comment as a member, please click here.
Your Name:
* Comments will be reviewed and posted in a timely fashion
* All fields are required
Please type the word 'water'
(For spam prevention, thanks)
Southampton Masonry-Visiting the Southampton or the Wainscott locations is an exciting experience.
Southampton Masonry has been serving Long Island's masonry and tile needs since 1975. Delivering quality products from Manhattan to Montauk for over three decades. The company's continued success is due primarily to their number one priority: customer satisfaction, with a promise of prompt and courteous service from the professional, knowledgeable staff. Southampton Masonry has the largest inventory on the east end. As direct importers they can offer a large variety of the finest quality products at the most competitive pricing for both your interior and exterior projects.

Southrifty Drug 54 Jagger Lane, Southampton Village
Southrifty Drug is a small, neighborhood pharmacy with limited shelf space, and we have to be very selective about which over-the-counter items we carry. As a result you'll find a no nonsense concentration of very effective, high quality and useful products on our shelves. In this new section, we feature a number of these products that we feel are especially worthy of your consideration.

Burner Law Group, P.C.
Burner Law Group, P.C. are full service elder law attorneys concentrating in the areas of Estate Planning, Trust and Estate Administration and Litigation, Special Needs Planning, Guardianship and Elder Law. Offices in East Setauket‚ NY, Westhampton Beach, NY, and New York, NY.

New York Title Abstract Services, Inc.
We are a title insurance services company dedicated to promptly delivering fully compliant and accurate reports, and title insurance, for residential and commercial real estate throughout New York State. Headquartered in the Hamptons, our professional team has extensive real estate experience and understands the business from all sides including title insurance, legal, sales, governmental, banking, and lending regulations.

Aimee Fitzpatrick Martin, Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Considered a West of the Shinnecock Canal expert with a 5-star Zillow ranking, Aimee specializes in the luxury and waterfront markets in Quogue, Westhampton Beach, Remsenburg, East Quogue and Hampton Bays. With exceptional communication skills and a buttoned-up approach to every deal, she is highly skilled in the art of the negotiation process. Understanding the nuances of buying and selling waterfront homes, especially on Dune Road, is a specialty.