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Has anyone ever sold a piece of land to a property developer?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by conny, 23 May 2020.

  1. conny

    conny

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    As the title says, has anyone sold a piece of land to a developer?

    My FIL has a section of land at the bottom of his garden which a developer wants to buy. Despite repeatedly telling him not to sign anything without speaking to us and seeking legal advice it appears he has signed a document in February which could potentially cost him thousands of pounds.

    Basically this document states that if the sale doesn't go through, for whatever reason, Mr XXXXX agrees to pay all reasonable costs associated with all work carried out to process this contract. We have now seen paperwork that so far he will be liable for £1,997.24 for searches carried out even if the deal doesn't go ahead. These costs are for land searches and provisional building consent plus a few other enquiries/sundries.

    I know this is totally wrong but am wondering if anyone else has had a similar occurrence.
    To me, the person buying the land is responsible for all costs except the sellers legal costs.
     
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  3. EddieM

    EddieM

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    Well indeed, they potential buyer should carry all of the risks and costs, after all they will potentially be the main beneficiaries.
     
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  4. Mottie

    Mottie

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    Did the developer approach him to buy or did he approach the property developer to sell?
     
  5. Doug99

    Doug99

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    Is there a period of grace within which he can withdraw without penalty?
     
  6. ellal

    ellal

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    It might seem totally wrong, but if it's in the contract legally it's not.

    Got offered deals for a plot of land and the developer(s) all laid out two options.
    One price with planning permission and one without. With initial searches etc to be paid by the seller.
    Then it comes down to negotiation and what gets put in the final contract before you decide whether it's a good deal or not.

    Sadly older folks tend to get swept up by developers spiel/bullshit!
     
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  8. conny

    conny

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    They approached him after they had re-built his original bungalow under an insurance claim.

    Ok, I can see the purpose of that but they have done all this without explaining exactly what would happen, without informing him before they do anything and without advising him he should seek legal advice before signing any contracts.
     
  9. Mottie

    Mottie

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    It does seem that they've been a bit underhand about it. I hope it all works out for him but as he's footing the bill for all the prep work, if he gets an okay for planning permission etc, could he then offer it out on the open market for a better price?
     
  10. conny

    conny

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    We think this is why they want him to pay for all the prep work so they won't be out of pocket if he backs out of the deal.
    Worried that even if/when the deal goes through there will be lots of clauses hidden in it that makes him the fall guy if things go belly up.
    Will be taking legal advice on Tuesday but wanted to put the feelers out for some feedback in the meantime.
     
  11. ellal

    ellal

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    You've answered your own question.

    Get a commercial property lawyer if it's not too late.

    Their fees might sometimes seem OTT, but weigh that up against the possible losses.
     
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