Fatwa: # 14890
Category: Business Matters
Country: South Africa
Date: 14th February 2007

Title

Person X offered to sell a house to Person Y. Three options of payment were given.

Question

Person X offered to sell a house to Person Y.  Three options of payment were given.  Person Y did not make a choice of the method of payment nor confirmed the amount of the sale.  Person Y started paying amounts to person X for the house at his own will.  For example, he would make a payment in January and maybe then again in May, June and not again for a few months.  These payments have not been fixed.  What recourse does person X have Islamically since no contract was agreed upon.  Can X terminate the contract and refund the payments, can X renegotiate the price.  Please advise according to Shariah.

Answer

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

According to Shariah, for a transaction to be valid, the purchase price of the item must be stipulated.  Once the seller offers the item and the buyer accepts it, the transaction is complete and is it incumbent upon the buyer to pay the seller the amount due. If they agreed upon the payment being in installments, then it is necessary that the time period and the amount for each installment are determined.


In the case mentioned, since the price was not stipulated, this transaction will be considered void and invalid.  The money received from person Y will be returned and the house will be still in the ownership of person X.  If X wishes to offer to person Y the house, he may do so.


And Allah knows best

Wassalam

Ml. Ehzaz Ajmeri,
Student Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa

 

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