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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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We are selling our narrowboat, a sale has been agreed and

Customer Question

Hello, we are selling our narrowboat, a sale has been agreed and the buyer has paid a 10% deposit to take the boat off the market while he gets it surveyed.
If he decides not to go through with the sale, do we keep the deposit or do we have to give it back?
Thanks
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 6 months ago.

Hi thank you for your question and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I will assist you. Did you tell the buyer he deposit is non refundable? Was it clear that the sale was conditional upon an inspection? Kind regards AJ

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
We did not specifically tell the buyer the deposit was non refundable, he gave us a cheque and we said we would bank it if he wanted the boat took off the market, he said yes bank it and take the boat off the market. We have turned other potential buyers away in the mean time.The buyer offered us the full asking price and said he wants a survey to find out when any remedial work may be needed and how much it would cost him. It was only made clear later on that he would give a final decision on the sale after the survey.
Expert:  Alex J. replied 6 months ago.

Hi. Thank you. Based on what you have said it sounds like you would be entitled to keep the deposit - simply because it seems like the purchase of the boat is not conditional on the survey. Would your understanding be that he will buy the boat regardless of the survey? Could you prove this in writing? Kind regards AJ

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