So, I'm in the process of trying to buy my first house. And, as I assumed, it's getting complicated. Basically, my husband and I found an awesome house. We love it. The couple that owned the house previously are going through a messy divorce, which is why they decided to sell.

So, we sent in an offer letter, which was a lowball but a fair price for the area. We received the signed offer letter back from the seller (through our agent, who received the signed letter from the seller's agent). We moved ahead with the process, paying $450 for an inspection and retaining a lawyer for $375 (half her fee - the rest of it due at closing). Our lawyer presented us with the seller's agreement, which we signed with a few requested changes.

Well, after two weeks, we hadn't heard anything back about the seller's countersignature. My husband finds out today that apparently the seller's husband is suing the seller (his wife/exwife/who knows) because he feels the offer she accepted was too low. She's signed the seller's agreement, but apparently the transaction can't proceed now that her ex is suing her over the sale.

My question is - there are plenty of other houses in the area. If they're not going to sell the house to us, I want to be able to explore other options. However:

-we've already put down $5k in earnest money

-we've sunk $825 into buying this house (inspector/lawyer)

I feel that we can get our earnest money back if the seller isn't able to sell the house pending a lawsuit. However, is anyone liable for the costs we'd already sunk into the inspector/lawyer? We paid these costs on the good-faith assumption that our offer was accepted, but if the seller didn't actually have the authority to accept our offer, shouldn't the seller be liable for our sunk costs? Anyone? Bueller?


Also, feel free to share your nightmare house buying stories, because it'll make my situation feel less crazy.