Is this gazumping?


I recently went through the process of purchasing a property. The agent advised that he would give my formal offer to the vendor - and see if they were willing to sign. They did, and the agent advised me that the offer was accepted. That was on the Friday before a long weekend, he said that they still had an open home that weekend and that there was a possibility that somebody would offer higher.

Is this actually allowed? If the vendor signs shouldn’t it all be done?



No Tim, this is no gazumping. It may not seem ethical, but it is not illegal. As a purchaser, if you have signed a formal offer (contract) and the agent tells you your offer has been accepted then you are bound. This is because the vendor holds a contract you have signed and so it can be enforced against you. However, as you have only received a verbal ‘acceptance’ from the vendor and you do not hold a document signed by the vendor, you are unable to enforce the contract against the vendor. This is because a verbal contract for the sale of land cannot be enforced.


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