My husband bought a multi-family at auction. Can we back out without loosing our deposit

We went to the property to see what we were in for. Oh Boy! The previous owner stated she still lives there, we have no right to set foot on her property, she never received notice, she is not leaving,and if and when she does, she completely intends on destroying the property. she blocked the driveway with her truck so we couldn’t leave. 3 police cruisers showed up! I thought owners were out before auction?? should we eat the deposit and run or can we get it back?? or what can we do about her?

Asked on June 29, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Massachusetts


Lisa Sigman or Eric Sigman / Sigman Law Office, P.C.

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Wow!  What a nightmare.  Only you can decide whether the amount of the deposit is such that you are comfortable walking away from - otherwise contact an attorney who handles MA Real Estate as soon as possible. 

Assuming this was a foreclosure sale, there maybe terms in the notice of the auction which entitle you to your deposit back.  You may have also signed some type of agreement at the close of the auction which could help you. 

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Rule Number One:  never put money down on real estate sight unseen, unless it's through a realtor who you have learned over time that you can trust.

If the notice for the auction, or something along those lines, clearly said the property was vacant, you might be able to get your money back, because that would have been fraud.  I would hope nobody in this day and age would have been stupid enough to set themselves up for that, but if so, you need to hire a lawyer.  And if not, you're going to need the lawyer to get rid of the truck lady, and fast.  One place to find a qualified attorney is our website,

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