Lisa is planning to open a new coffee shop and is looking for some modern tables and chairs to furnish it with. Her friend Tom is a carpenter so she asked him if he could make her six tables.
Tom quoted the price of $3000 for all six tables and said that he is currently talking to Bob, the timber supplier regarding sourcing the appropriate timber.
Bob emailed Tom saying:
“Yes, I think I have the right timber. For what you need it should be around $1800.”
Upon receiving the quote Lisa responded by email as follows:
“Good, make sure that it is a hardwood and light in colour. Let’s agree that $3000 is a final price including timber and your labour.”
A few days later Tom emailed Lisa that the price has now changed to $3600 as the timber is more expensive than he thought. He also wrote:
“Yes, of course, I will make sure that it will be hardwood but I cannot guarantee the colour as it varies between different batches of timber. Also, the timber merchant would like $500 deposit and I am short on cash. Does it all sound ok?”
The next day Lisa transferred $500 to Tom’s account.
Some weeks later Tom delivered the tables to Lisa but she was not happy:
“These are just too dark! I asked you specifically to make them light in colour. Take them away and I want my $500 back!”
Tom was really upset and said:
“You cannot do it! We have a contract! I don’t have any money left after I paid for the timber and even if I wanted I cannot pay you back the $500.”
“No, we don’t have a contract! I never signed anything. And as I still own you $800 from our trip last year, keep my $500. Now I don’t own you anything.”
Question 1. Has a contract been formed in this scenario? Question 2. Does Lisa own Tom anything?