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Be Careful What You Offer

Posted on April 5, 2019 | Posted in Five Liners, Real Estate

Miller v. Wang 2018 Ont SCJ

After the market had dropped and one month before closing, purchaser’s lawyer notified vendor’s lawyer that purchaser would not be completing the purchase and advised the vendor to re-list the property. Vendor re-sold the house for damages of $200,000 and sued for them. Purchaser third partied her real estate agent, claiming that the agent wrongly pressured and induced her to purchase the property at an inflated price. The judge, on a summary judgment motion, awarded judgment against purchaser for vendor’s damages, dismissing each of purchaser’s defences. Vendor did not need to tender because purchaser had repudiated the agreement. Vendor made no false representations and therefore no evidence existed of unfair dealings or a false bidding war; Vendor merely accepted purchaser’s offer, which was the highest offer presented. Vendor was not unjustly enriched; it was purchaser’s decision to offer significantly more than the listing price. Purchaser did not establish that vendor failed to mitigate his damages. The judge refused to stay judgment pending disposition of the 3rd party claim. He saw no reason to force vendor to run the risk that purchaser’s financial circumstances could deteriorate over the period of the delay. He noted that vendor was innocent of any wrongdoing and that purchaser had clearly breached the agreement.


Jonathan Speigel


Written by Jonathan Speigel, the founding partner of Speigel Nichols Fox LLP, leads the litigation and construction practices.


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