A decide has ordered a B.C. couple to pay a $52,500 fee to the actual property company that listed two properties they owned, regardless that a sale of the properties was by no means accomplished.
The judgment this week within the case of Mike and Jessica Armstrong’s two tons on Lake Errock confirms that the usual itemizing contract for houses in B.C. permits for fee to be collected so long as there’s a legally enforceable contract of sale. It does not require the sale to really shut.
“The fee clause doesn’t consult with a closing or completion,” B.C. Supreme Court docket Justice Sheila Tucker wrote in a judgment on Monday.
“The fee clause … discloses the likelihood that fee may be owing below the MLS contracts with out a closing on a completion date.”
The decide mentioned the Armstrongs have been on the hook for the fee to Century 21 Seaside Realty in White Rock, in addition to authorized prices.
Seaside’s lawsuit had requested for a fee of $70,875 to be paid, however a disclosure of remuneration doc capped the company’s fee at $52,500, the decide wrote.
Tucker additionally dismissed a third-party declare filed by the Armstrongs towards actual property agent Fabian Saul, and mentioned he was entitled to his prices.
Company fulfilled circumstances of contract, decide says
The Armstrongs signed a typical a number of itemizing service (MLS) settlement with Seaside in Might 2017 for his or her two rustic cabins on a quiet lake east of Mission, courtroom paperwork present. They’d later signal a restricted twin company settlement as properly, permitting the brokerage to symbolize each the client and the vendor within the deal.
In August of 2017, an organization known as Vans Intrust Investments, represented by Michael Tran, entered into an settlement of buy and sale to purchase the 2 tons.
The contract needed to be prolonged as soon as, however the eventual deal was to pay $1.35 million with a cut-off date in July 2018.
When the cut-off date arrived, the client was nowhere to be discovered, and $70,000 in deposits was forfeited to the Armstrongs.
Seaside filed go well with towards the Armstrongs in 2020, demanding fee plus curiosity for the aborted sale. The Armstrongs later filed a third-party declare towards Saul, alleging he’d breached his fiduciary obligation and misled them.
Of their response to Seaside’s declare, the Armstrongs alleged that the gross sales settlement was unenforceable due to a clause that stipulated the client would go to the properties earlier than completion. They claimed that they had didn’t ferry Tran throughout the lake to see the tons after the settlement was signed.
However Saul had taken Tran to go to the tons a minimum of twice, so “if the go to clause was a real situation, it was a fulfilled situation,” Tucker wrote.
And whereas the Armstrongs alleged that Saul had breached his fiduciary obligation to them by failing to advise them they must pay fee even with out a accomplished closing, the decide mentioned there was no foundation for that.
She identified that Mike Armstrong is an expert accountant, and the couple has purchased and offered property earlier than. There was no proof suggesting they weren’t given sufficient time to learn the itemizing settlement, she mentioned.
She additionally mentioned that the Armstrongs had failed to indicate Saul had fraudulently misrepresented himself by promoting that he can present providers in B.C. and Washington state.
Tucker identified that even when Saul had initially misled the Armstrongs about his potential to record the properties within the U.S., they nonetheless continued to work with him after studying it would not be potential, even signing the twin company settlement.
Property data present the Armstrongs are nonetheless house owners of each properties, now valued at greater than $2.23 million within the 2022 assessments.