Making an offer to Purchase
Your REALTOR® will help you prepare an offer using standard forms. The offer, if accepted, will become a binding contract. Understanding the standard forms and the many transactional issues is key to negotiating the best terms to meet your individual needs.
This document is the most important paper you will sign because, it is a legal document, and it lays out all the terms of the transaction. It typically contains:
- Names – your legal names, your current address, and the legal names of the Sellers.
- Legal Description – the legal description of the property.
- Price – How much are you are willing to offer.
- Deposit – A deposit acts to represent an expression of the serious intention of the buyer, a deposit generally speaking is held by the Buyer’s REALTORs® brokerage as a stakeholder in trust. A deposit that goes into “Trust” can not be released to either parties without all parties consent.
- Inclusions -‐ any items in / around the home that you think are included in the sale should be specifically stated in your offer. Some examples might be window coverings and appliances.
- Exclusions – if there is anything you specifically want excluded.,/li>
- Completion Date is the date that the money changes hands in exchange for title.
- Possession Date usually follows completion by one to two days, depending on the circumstances of all parties surrounding the move.
- Adjustment Date is the date when you as the new owner are responsible for things like insurance, taxes, garbage, etc.
You should definitely add some conditions to your offer in order to protect yourself. Ensure that you have an opportunity to explore all aspects of the home and its purchase that are important to you.
Take precautions to protect yourself against unseen defects in the home. An inspection by a qualified inspector can provide you with unbiased opinions about the condition of the foundation, mechanical systems, plumbing systems, appliances, etc. If you can, accompany the inspector at the time the inspection is conducted.
Each contract is unique to the home and your personal circumstances. Other conditions for your benefit may include, but are not limited to, satisfactory inspection reports, property appraisal, surveys, title search, insurability of dwelling, and lender approval of mortgage financing. The contract will become final only when the conditions are satisfied or waived.
If you are uncertain about any of the clauses contained in the offer, you may wish to consult a lawyer before signing the contract.