Land Court: Texts Do Not Form Real Estate Contract

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Earlier this month Massachusetts Land Court ruled that text messages alone were insufficient to form a binding real estate contract.  Cabral v. Drouin, 17 MISC 000616.

The text messages were exchanged between a perspective homebuyer and the seller’s real estate agent.

After a few days of negotiating a sale price, the agent sent a text message to the perspective buyer stating

$225,000 and I will get [the seller] to sign tonight!!!

Upon receiving the text, the perspective buyer responded

Done!  Accepted at $225,000.  Thank you.

He then signed an Offer to Purchase Real Estate and mailed it to the agent.

The seller did not sign the Offer and refused to take the house off the market.

The perspective buyer filed an action in Land Court seeking an order from the court requiring that the house be sold for the agreed upon price.

The plaintiff’s version of the facts are recited in a affidavit recorded in the Middlesex Registry of Deeds in Book 70067, Page 376.

The court dismissed the case on November 8.

The house was sold for $247,100 on November 22.  The deed is recorded in Book 70279, Page 149.

If you have any questions regarding buying or selling your home, please contact me at justin@jrmccarthy.com.

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