Home buyer questions legality of $150K price hike

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DEAR BOB: I made a purchase offer to buy a house listed for sale at $700,000. I offered $705,000, agreed to pay all closing costs, and to take care of all the deferred maintenance. The house has three heirs who are battling on the sale. I really wanted to purchase this house. The termite (pest control) inspection revealed $30,000 of needed repairs, but I didn't ask the seller to pay this expense. Two of the heirs accepted my purchase offer. But the third heir held out and said, "I want more." Sixteen days after making my purchase offer, the sellers counteroffered at $850,000. If the house had been listed for sale at that price, I wouldn't have even looked at it because it is out of my price range. Can the sellers do this? I am insulted and don't know if I should waste more time with this house? --Toby McP. DEAR TOBY: A home seller who has signed a listing doesn't have to sell the house at any price. However, because the house was listed for sale at $700,000 and you made a...