The Purchase Contract
Most real estate agents use standard pre-printed purchase contract forms, filling in the details specific to your purchase terms. These legally-binding documents are used to:
While most buyers are usually fully aware of terms regarding price, closing date, and financial arrangements, there is a tendency to overlook much of the rest of the contract. However, since all the contract terms will be binding, it is important to understand what you are agreeing to before signing the contract. Not doing so can be a costly mistake, especially if there are problems or difficulties in the transaction.
A purchase contract is created when there is a “meeting of the minds” on all terms—when you and the seller have come to agreement and signed the offer form along with any counter-offers and addenda. Real estate contracts must be in writing; verbal contracts to purchase real estate cannot be enforced.
Some of the items that you may be agreeing to may include:
It is highly recommended that you read and review the pre-printed forms with your buyer’s representative before you write and sign a purchase offer. That way, once you are ready to present a bona-fide offer, your focus will be on the primary issues of price, terms, and closing date.
Reviewing and understanding the purchase contract form ahead of time can also help you strengthen your negotiating position, protect yourself from incurring unnecessary costs or problems, and gain a better understanding of what you will need to do to conclude the sale.