A couple that had agreed to buy a New Rochelle house for $705,000 is demanding that Wells Fargo Bank stick to a $140,000 reduced price negotiated after the house was damaged.
Daniel and Aviva Gordon of Riverdale, sued Wells Fargo, Heritage Real Estate Services in Mount Vernon and real estate broker Sylvia Woods on Jan. 8 in Westchester Supreme Court.
The Gordons “have been ready, willing and able to complete this transaction and purchase of property,” the complaint states. “However, in light of the casualty losses the property sustained … the purchase price of the property must be reduced.”
The 4,132-square-foot house was built in 1924 on a quarter-acre lot at 20 Trenor Drive in the Wykagyl Park neighborhood. It has six bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms.
The median value of houses in the neighborhood is $924,000, according to Realtor.com, and nearby houses have sold for as much as $1.3 million. The Trenor Drive house sold for $945,000 in 2013.
The 2013 buyer defaulted on a $756,000 mortgage with Wells Fargo, and the bank foreclosed on the property in 2017 and acquired it at a public auction in 2018.
The Gordons agreed to buy it “as is” for $705,000 last February, and they made a $70,500 down payment. The closing was scheduled for April 8.
But before the closing, a tree fell on the house and mold developed inside.
Woods and the Gordons worked out a new deal, reducing the price by nearly 20%, to $565,000.
The Gordons claim that Woods was acting as Wells Fargo’s agent and that the new agreement amounted to a novation – a replacement contract where all concerned parties agree to the change.
But Wells Fargo repudiated the deal and put the house back on the market for $664,900.
The couple accuses Wells Fargo, Heritage and Woods of breach of contract and, as to Woods and Heritage, tortious interference with a contract.
They are demanding that Wells Fargo honors the revised price or that the original price be reduced to compensate for the property damages.
Neither Wells Fargo nor Woods immediately responded to requests for their sides of the story.
The Gordons are represented by Paul M. Sod of Lawrence, Nassau County.