Agreement of sale signed, death of the purchaser: What happens?

In the case of the death of the purchaser of a property after signing the agreement of sale, the sale remains effective. The inheritors must proceed with the notarial deed.

The purchaser dies after signing the agreement (compromis). This does not terminate the purchase agreement. It remains in effect. The inheritors must proceed with the official deed. If they do not wish to proceed, the seller may force them to continue. The latter can agree to a resolution of cancellation of the sale by accepting immediate compensation if the inheritors do not wish to proceed with the sale.

There are solutions available. The agreement of sale (compromis) may provide a suspensive condition for obtaining a loan. If this is the case and the inheritors do not obtain a loan, they may be released from the sale.

Another option: a clause written into the agreement of sale (compromis) that there is a resolution of the sale in the case of death of one of the parties between the agreement of sale and the notarial deed.

The inheritors may also contact the seller to try to find a suitable arrangement for a resolution of the sale through limited compensation

Insurance? If the agreement of sale (compromis) has been concluded with a Notaire (notary) or estate agent, you can benefit from free life insurance.

Thus, if you die, as the purchaser, the insurance covers the price of the purchase of the house or apartment. This applies if the purchaser dies as a result of an accident but not if the purchaser dies from an illness or suicide, for example. Furthermore, the insurance cover is capped at 250,000 euros. For further information, consult your insurance broker or Notaire (notary).

Jan ROODHOOFT, lawyer (

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