I put a very large deposit(listed as deposit on contract, NOT earnest money) down, paid directly to the builder. I know, stupid in hind site.
Was for a "cost plus" new home. We had a serious dispute on the cost number and I moved forward with going to closing with my calculated cost, but the builder never went to closing and verbally refused to sell to me at my calculated cost.
After that, I phoned him and informed him that I wanted my deposit back and he said that because of financial struggles, he just didn't have it.
Now he has listed the house for sale but has still not given me my deposit back. The price he has the house listed at is extremely high for the area and it will not sell, so it's going to continue sitting.
I know contractors can file liens, which I see as very effective because a house can't close without the liens being taken care of, but what is the remedy for a non-contractor, i.e. me the buyer?? I am very comfortable with filing at my county courthouse, know the process, etc. I JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT TO FILE THAT WILL BE EFFECTIVE.
Addition info: The builder continues to sell lots and spec home in the development, so even though he is having so-called financial troubles, he is bringing in revenue. Is there some way to put a lien on all properties until give me the deposit back or at least starts paying it down??
My wife and I have a good chunk of our savings involved here and we can't afford sit down with attorneys wanting quoted rates of $180-$250 an hour as we just can't afford much, so I am trying to do everything within my power personally before going the attorney route.
I appreciate all advice, but please DO NOT lecture me on what I should have done. I feel stupid enough. I need advice on what to do GOING FORWARD.
Thanks very much.