Miami couple seek court action to push through sale of “Yachtman’s Paradise” home

Seller won’t explain why he refuses to close the $2M sale, lawsuit alleges

Miami /
Jan.January 16, 2019 04:30 PM

Douglas Gallagher and 13061 Lerida Street (Credit: Redfin)

When it comes to buying one particular five-bedroom, five-bathroom waterfront house in Gables by the Sea, one Miami couple isn’t taking no for an answer.

On Jan. 8, Juan Carlos and Natalie Mederos sued the property’s current owner, Douglas Gallagher, for backing out of a deal to sell them the house for $2.19 million last month. The Mederos are seeking a court order to force Gallagher to close and turn over the property.

“He wants to rescind the contract, but won’t give a reason why,” said David Winker, the attorney representing the Mederos. “It’s a pretty unusual case in that rarely does the seller back out at the last minute. I’ve only seen it happen during a boom when someone will come along with a bigger offer.”

A Coral Gables businessman, Gallagher is the brother of former Florida Insurance Commissioner Tom Gallagher and he is married to Vietnamese Princess Thi-Nga. They own the Poetic Moon winery in Napa Valley and are very active in South Florida’s social scene. According to Zillow, the Gables by the Sea house is currently listed for $2.5 million and is billed as a “Yachtman’s Paradise” featuring 92 linear feet of dock and seawall with direct ocean access. Gallagher’s lawyer Nicholas Siegfried declined comment.

According to the lawsuit, the Mederos entered into a residential sales contract and put down a $200,000 deposit to buy Gallagher’s house at 13061 Lerida Street for $2.2 million. After three addendums, the price was negotiated down to $2.19 million, the complaint alleges.

The Mederos allege Gallagher breached the contract on Nov. 9 by refusing to allow them to conduct an insurance inspection. Instead, Gallagher hired his own inspector who produced a report containing a number of alleged falsehoods. For instance, the report allegedly stated that the home’s entire plumbing system was replaced in 2005 when the property still has its original cast iron pipes, some of which leak, the lawsuit claims.

Despite meeting all their obligations, Gallagher’s lawyer informed the Mederos on Dec. 10 that his client would not be closing the transaction. Both sides attempted to mediate, but could not break the impasse, the lawsuit states.

Florida law allows buyers to request a judge to force sellers to consummate a real estate contract, Winker said. “A judge can force him to hand over the property,” he said. “If he loses, he has to sell the house plus pay all of my clients’ attorney fees so the stakes couldn’t be higher. “


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Jose Cornide and Alex Hanna (LinkedIn, Alex Hanna Law, Google Maps)

Attorney Alex Hanna buys Coral Gables home for nearly $9M

Attorney Alex Hanna buys Coral Gables home for nearly $9M
Masoud Shojaee with rendering of Sanctuary at Doral and pictured with daughter Lilibet Shojaee (Shoma Group)

Trusts benefitting Masoud Shojaee’s daughters sue to access his company’s financial records

Trusts benefitting Masoud Shojaee’s daughters sue to access his company’s financial records
Oprah Winfrey and (inset) Lawrence Stroll over the unit (Getty)

You get a condo! Billionaire Lawrence Stroll sells Oprah’s former Fisher Island penthouse

You get a condo! Billionaire Lawrence Stroll sells Oprah’s former Fisher Island penthouse
20200 West Dixie Highway, Miami with Harry Dornbusch and Dr. Joshua Lampert (Google Maps)

Aventura office condo owners allege construction defects at Beacon Tower

Aventura office condo owners allege construction defects at Beacon Tower
Marc Anthony and 300 Costanera Road (Getty, Mint Studios Miami)

Marc Anthony lists waterfront Coral Gables mansion for $27M

Marc Anthony lists waterfront Coral Gables mansion for $27M
Triton Center (iStock)

Questions surround $50M in EB-5 investments tied to former INS building: lawsuit

Questions surround $50M in EB-5 investments tied to former INS building: lawsuit
8950 Arvida Drive with Andre Hakkak and Marissa Shipman (One Sotheby's, White Oak, The Balm)

Financier and cosmetics CEO buy Gables Estates mansion for $14M

Financier and cosmetics CEO buy Gables Estates mansion for $14M
Dina Goldentayer, Ryan Cohen and the Bal Bay Drive home (Credit: Kris Tamburello/Douglas Elliman)

Lawsuit alleges Harding Realty cut out of $24M Bal Harbour sale, reveals Chewy founder as alleged buyer

Lawsuit alleges Harding Realty cut out of $24M Bal Harbour sale, reveals Chewy founder as alleged buyer
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...