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I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!

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OP, how would you handle the situation if the buyer came and said he changed is mind and asked for his refund?

You can ex... (more)

GreyRabbit (Mar. 06, 2017 @ 9:59a) |

Explain how your dog just had puppies in the back seat and the car now has sentimental value to you

BPANZER1 (Mar. 06, 2017 @ 10:08a) |

i think what PrincipalMember is trying to say is that the OP didnt sign a Bill of Sale as stated in the original post. O... (more)

solarUS (Mar. 06, 2017 @ 10:26a) |

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Technically yes. However if the buyer doesn't do anything, then you're off the hook. In theory, the buyer could sue for specific performance and the courts would compel you to sell your car. Sometimes you have to pay off the buyer for their troubles to make them go away. If the buyer doesn't complain, no issues.

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​There's no law against being a dick.

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Matematik said:   the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer 
  What car is it? If more than a few years old chances are the dealer will say it needs thousands in repairs so buyer will pass anyway. 

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OP just learned about the TDI buyback

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Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  Yes. I'd only do it if the buyer will let me off the hook willingly.

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megatard said:   ​There's no law against being a dick.
  
But there are laws against dicks under contract.  I hope the buyer takes the OP for a ride.

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Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc. - we agree on the price, do the necessary paperwork, collect the money and everybody is happily on their way. At the end of the transaction, I give the buyer a receipt saying that I received $... for full payment of the car and no warranties are implied. Did the buyer make you sign this bill of sale or did you volunteer?

And what do you mean by "changed your mind" - did you get a better offer?

I hope that I never run into you in real life - this is all very shady.

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PrincipalMember said:   This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc. - we agree on the price, do the necessary paperwork, collect the money and everybody is happily on their way. 
  Assuming this is a many thousand dollar car and most buyers don't walk around with that much cash in their pocket and it's after banking hours. You agree on the price, give the seller a deposit, get a receipt, then come back the next day after the bank is open with the balance.

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atikovi said:   
PrincipalMember said:   This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc. - we agree on the price, do the necessary paperwork, collect the money and everybody is happily on their way. 
  Assuming this is a many thousand dollar car and most buyers don't walk around with that much cash in their pocket and it's after banking hours. You agree on the price, give the seller a deposit, get a receipt, then come back the next day after the bank is open with the balance.

  
A lot of it still works on trust. In my transactions, I agree on the price and if the transaction is not happening on the same day, I have given the buyer day or two to come back with the money / cashiers check. I don't bother with the deposit. Even when the transaction happens on the same day, the buyer is not walking around with the cash. We agree on the price and then the buyer gets a cashier's check for the negotiated amount. Only one time when I was selling my van for $3000'ish, the buyer was actually walking around with that cash.

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PrincipalMember said:   
Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc...At the end of the transaction, I give the buyer a receipt saying that I received $... for full payment of the car and no warranties are implied.
 

 
How exactly is that different than a bill of sale?  Just cause you didn't sign it?

I'm pretty sure my state requires a bill of sale for private party purchases.

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PrincipalMember said:   
atikovi said:   
PrincipalMember said:   This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc. - we agree on the price, do the necessary paperwork, collect the money and everybody is happily on their way. 
  Assuming this is a many thousand dollar car and most buyers don't walk around with that much cash in their pocket and it's after banking hours. You agree on the price, give the seller a deposit, get a receipt, then come back the next day after the bank is open with the balance.

  
A lot of it still works on trust. In my transactions, I agree on the price and if the transaction is not happening on the same day, I have given the buyer day or two to come back with the money / cashiers check. I don't bother with the deposit. 

  Yea, trust someone you just met through the internet. What could go wrong. Without a deposit, you're giving the buyer a day or two to shop around for a better deal or to just change his mind about even buying it, while turning away potential real buyers.

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wilesmt said:   
PrincipalMember said:   
Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc...At the end of the transaction, I give the buyer a receipt saying that I received $... for full payment of the car and no warranties are implied.

 
How exactly is that different than a bill of sale?  Just cause you didn't sign it?

I'm pretty sure my state requires a bill of sale for private party purchases.

  
This is at the end of the transaction - the money has been exchanged and the car keys have been given to the buyer. All done. The OP thing is more like a contract - the transaction hasn't happened - just an agreement to do the transaction.

In theory, if the buyer doesn't close the transaction, the seller can keep the deposit. That is why it is not a bill of sale.

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atikovi said:   
PrincipalMember said:   A lot of it still works on trust. In my transactions, I agree on the price and if the transaction is not happening on the same day, I have given the buyer day or two to come back with the money / cashiers check. I don't bother with the deposit. 
  Yea, trust someone you just met through the internet. What could go wrong. Without a deposit, you're giving the buyer a day or two to shop around for a better deal or to just change his mind about even buying it, while turning away potential real buyers.


And you are asking this person to trust you and give you a deposit?

I just keep the list of the other buyers and tell them that I have an offer and if things fall through, I will let them know. When the transaction is done, I shoot them a text to let them know that the vehicle is gone.  

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PrincipalMember said:   
atikovi said:   
PrincipalMember said:   A lot of it still works on trust. In my transactions, I agree on the price and if the transaction is not happening on the same day, I have given the buyer day or two to come back with the money / cashiers check. I don't bother with the deposit. 
  Yea, trust someone you just met through the internet. What could go wrong. Without a deposit, you're giving the buyer a day or two to shop around for a better deal or to just change his mind about even buying it, while turning away potential real buyers.


And you are asking this person to trust you and give you a deposit?

I just keep the list of the other buyers and tell them that I have an offer and if things fall through, I will let them know. When the transaction is done, I shoot them a text to let them know that the vehicle is gone.  

Well, they know where I live, so yes.
If it works for you, great, but either the other people have bought a car by the time you call them back, or it's another week before they can come by to see it, or they think something is wrong with the car if the first guy backed out, or a dozen other stories.

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PrincipalMember said:   
wilesmt said:   
PrincipalMember said:   
Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc...At the end of the transaction, I give the buyer a receipt saying that I received $... for full payment of the car and no warranties are implied.

 
How exactly is that different than a bill of sale?  Just cause you didn't sign it?

I'm pretty sure my state requires a bill of sale for private party purchases.

  
This is at the end of the transaction - the money has been exchanged and the car keys have been given to the buyer. All done. The OP thing is more like a contract - the transaction hasn't happened - just an agreement to do the transaction.

In theory, if the buyer doesn't close the transaction, the seller can keep the deposit. That is why it is not a bill of sale.

  The "receipt" thingy you described is called a Bill of Sale.  In many states if a required doc to register the vehicle in the new owner's name.  In case the cop pull over the new owner for failing to display the plates, they can show the bill of sale and the title to prove that they just purchased the vehicle and that they're the legit owner. 

rated:
Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  If the buyer accepts the deposit back then you're not in the breach of contract.  If the buyer insist on buying the vehicle and you don't sell it then you're in the breach of contact.  As clear as a day and night or black and white.

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Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
The situation is a little bit strange and sounds like one or both parties have limited experience selling/buying cars on craigslist. Is this a high dollar sale where there is a limited number of buyers or an old car in good condition where sellers are scarce and buyers are everywhere?

You have sell by date after which contract is void. Just stall for time and let it pass.

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I bought a car a few years ago, was listed for sale in October, we meet and I want it. Girl tells she needs the car till graduation in Dec. Price was such a good deal I gave the girl a $200 deposit and had her call me in Dec when she was ready. Picked it up in Dec without a hitch, I got a cheap car for my boys and she had a buyer when she was ready to leave town.

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I sold a 5 year old truck for like $20K and didn't expect the buyer to give me a deposit. Then again, I was having trouble selling the truck at the price I wanted it for. In a period of about 3 months, only got about 2 serious buyers with one sale falling through. 

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You would be in breach of contract.

On a human note, I'd offer the buyer something for the trouble/inconvenience you've caused them.

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OP, how would you handle the situation if the buyer came and said he changed is mind and asked for his refund?

You can explain you had a chance of him, but offer him something for the trouble. He could have missed out on another car because he commuted with you, or he could have sold another car he had, you don't know the full situation.

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Explain how your dog just had puppies in the back seat and the car now has sentimental value to you

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ach1199 said:   
PrincipalMember said:   
wilesmt said:   
PrincipalMember said:   
Matematik said:   I took a deposit on my car. Since then, I have changed my mind about selling it. I will refund the deposit. Am I in breach of contract with the buyer? I signed a bill of sale saying that I agree to sell the car and the sale is contingent on inspection at a dealer and must occur prior to a certain date. Thanks!
  
This whole thing seems very bizzare to me. I have sold a few used cars in my lifetime and never signed a bill of sale etc...At the end of the transaction, I give the buyer a receipt saying that I received $... for full payment of the car and no warranties are implied.

 
How exactly is that different than a bill of sale?  Just cause you didn't sign it?

I'm pretty sure my state requires a bill of sale for private party purchases.

  
This is at the end of the transaction - the money has been exchanged and the car keys have been given to the buyer. All done. The OP thing is more like a contract - the transaction hasn't happened - just an agreement to do the transaction.

In theory, if the buyer doesn't close the transaction, the seller can keep the deposit. That is why it is not a bill of sale.

  The "receipt" thingy you described is called a Bill of Sale.  In many states if a required doc to register the vehicle in the new owner's name.  In case the cop pull over the new owner for failing to display the plates, they can show the bill of sale and the title to prove that they just purchased the vehicle and that they're the legit owner. 

i think what PrincipalMember is trying to say is that the OP didnt sign a Bill of Sale as stated in the original post. OP signed an ad-hoc Agreement to Sell, subject to a variety of conditions. 

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