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tdlawyer
tdlawyer, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1096
Experience:  11 years experience of general practice.
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my husband and I are selling a house that we rent out, he signed

Resolved Question:

my husband and I are selling a house that we rent out, he signed a contract with an estate agents but I did not as i think their fees are too hig, they are not prepared to drop their fees or let us out of the contact early. Is the contract legally binding as I have not signed it? They are saying it is legally binding as they have found a buyer for the property.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  tdlawyer replied 3 years ago.
tdlawyer :

Hi, thanks for your question. My name is***** can assist with this.

tdlawyer :

Can you tell me why the contract hasn't been signed please?

Customer:

Hi

Customer:

my husband went to the estate agents while I was at work and he signed the contract there and then at the estate agents and brought the contract home for me to sign unfortunately he didn't read the back where the fees were written down as he thought he had signed for "sell your house for £150" offer that the agents were doing at time (he is not very good a legal jargon and too trusting) I came home from work and read contract and wouldn't sign it as I think the fees are too high. I have tried negotiating with the manager but all he says is that the contract has been signed - the property we are selling is in joint names.

tdlawyer :

Did you give the contract back signed by your husband or communicate in any way to them that he had signed it?

Customer:

they knew he has signed it as he signed it in the estate agents when he went to inquire about selling the property - they kept a copy and he brought a copy home for me to sign(I was supposed to sign it and return it to them)

tdlawyer :

Does it require you both to sign it, i.e. does it define the landlord as both of you AND does it say anything about joint and several liability?

Customer:

Sorry for delay just quickly re reading contract - doesn't specify only that both our names a down as the registered owners - does not say anything about joint and several liability.

tdlawyer :

Okay, then I suppose you could argue that the contract was one intended to be with both of you. This would likely be on the basis that you both needed to agree to be able to let the property as both your names were on it.

tdlawyer :

As such you would then argue there is no liability to make payment.

tdlawyer :

It might be a bit tricky though because they will argue that you're both jointly and severally liable on the agreement (this is the usual position), and that whoever agrees to it will be bound by it - i.e. he is but you not.

tdlawyer :

Much will come down to what the agreement says on this, (if anything), but if nothing, then to be honest, I expect the latter approach would apply and that he would be liable and you wouldn't - but I appreciate this isn't much help as your debt is his debt etc...

Customer:

ok, thanks for your help - not sure where this leaves the contract as it is still the question that he signed and I didn't and all the manager says is that the contract has been signed(perhaps we only need to half the fees as only half of us signed !!)

tdlawyer :

You could try that approach, but legally, if one has signed it - he's liable for all of it normally.

tdlawyer :

Like I mentioned above, I expect that the contract is valid against him, but then, you would want to exploit the point I made above to try and get yourself a better deal if you wanted to get out if without paying their high fees and/or ending up in court.

Customer:

ok thanks for help at least i know where i stand legally.

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