Contingencies Regarding Real Estate Offers; What You Should (And Shouldn’t) Include In Your Offer

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Contingencies to Include When Putting In An Offer

Obviously, sellers prefer real estate offers without any contingencies. The key to getting your offer accepted is being fair and keeping contingencies to a minimum. You do not want to make crazy demands, to where the seller thinks that you are an insane person. Below are a list of contingencies that you should consider putting in the offer. However, don’t use all of them! You do not want the seller to think you are difficult at the first stage of potentially working with them.

A home inspection is not required, but it does come highly recommended. In your offer, be sure to include that the sale of the house is contingent on a positive home inspection. The inspection will show you what repairs need to be done.

Afterward, you can ask the seller to make the repairs that the inspector found within the home. If the seller refuses to complete these repairs, you are able to walk. Be very careful about adding a contingency stating that the offer is contingent upon whether or not you’re able to get a loan for a mortgage. A seller wants to sell their home as fast as possible.

You’re immediately letting them know that its possible you could be wasting their time. Don’t shop for a house without having a pre-approval ready to show to the seller. Especially if the seller already has several buyers interested, they’re not going to wait on you to let them know if you can afford their house or not!

An earnest money deposit is very, very important, as it shows the seller that you are serious about buying your house. However, never put down an insanely high amount as your earnest money deposit, because it’s possible you could lose it. Add in the contingencies that if the seller doesn’t accept your offer, that you get your money back and that if they do accept it, that the money go toward your closing costs.

Always add an expiration date to your offer! This means that the seller has a certain amount of time to respond to your offer. That way, they don’t have a massive amount of time to kill while they wait on other buyers who might offer more, while keeping you on the back burner as a sure thing. But yet allow enough time to where they can honestly think over your offer.

Sellers are required to let you know if there are issues with the property, but they are not required to make those repairs. Many states make sellers inform buyers of any major repairs or problems that were done or occurred in the past five years. These include mold problems, major water damage, or major electrical issues. Sellers also have to disclose any current major issues with the house.

Walk-Through: In your offer, state your wish for a walk-through on the day of closing. This way, you can conduct a final inspection of the house. If the walk-through reveals issues not previously disclosed – perhaps a hole in the wall, a broken appliance, or a water leak – you can legally postpone or cancel the home closing.

1 Comment

  1. Because the seller is not required to disclose certain issues with the home, it is of the utmost importance that you bring in an inspector. Your OWN inspector, not one chosen by them. It is your responsibility to do as much due diligence when checking out the ins and outs of the house.

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