Signed contract, paid $1000 deposit but missed out on house


Just after a bit if advice. We found a house we liked to be our ppor. We put in an offer last week of $437000. The house was advertised at $440000 - $450000. They had 2 previous offers that had fallen through. One for $456000 and one for $446000.

Anyway both my husband and I signed the contract and paid the $1000 holding deposit. Anyway after a few days of negotiations we got a call from the r/e agent saying yesterday saying congrats we had bought the house for $441000. He asked us to come in and initial the changes i.e the amount.

One hour before we were to go in he called and said there was a problem and the vendor wanted to see him but he had not idea what about.

We find out today the APPARENTLY the husband accepted the offer and was happy but the wife wasnt happy with the amount and suddenly a family friend had come along and offered $455000 for the house so they sold it to them.

The r/e agent rang and apologised as he had no idea this was going on. He didnt ask us if we wanted to offer any more - and I wouldnt anyway.

So now I am angry. My gut is telling me that it is too bad as the vendor hadnt signed the contract. Does a verbal agreement stand for anything? Or is it just bad luck to us?

It sounds damn dodgy to me to be honest.

Sadly until both parties sign, a contract does not exist.

But you had offered as high as you were prepared to go so it is just bad luck someone offered more.

Spare a thought for the RE agent - depending on his agreement with the vendor he may get zilch after his hard work.