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Superior Court Upholds Grant of Summary Judgment to Homebuyer Who Exercised Unambiguous Termination Provision in Sales Contract

Wilmoth v. Kuhn, No. 06A-10-002-JEB, 2007 WL 925616 (Del. Super. Ct. Mar. 28, 2007).

Homebuyer entered into contract with defendant builder for purchase of a lot and construction of a home. The contract provided that the buyer’s obligations were contingent on being able to install an in-ground pool according to the buyer’s specifications. If such a pool could not be installed, the buyer could terminate and the seller had to return the deposit. 

A month after the buyers signed the contract, they informed the seller that they were unable to build a pool of their choice and thus were terminating the agreement. They asked the seller to return their $50,000 deposit. The seller rejected the termination and refused to turnover the funds. 

The buyers sued in the Court of Common Pleas, seeking damages in the amount of the deposit, plus interest, fees, and costs, and they moved for summary judgment. The Court of Common Pleas granted it. On appeal, the Superior Court upheld that decision, noting that the unambiguous language of the sales contract required the builder to refund the deposit if the buyer’s could not have the pool of their choice.

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