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Making An Offer

Now that you've found a home you love, it's time to make an offer.  Your skilled agent will be able to perform a market analysis of the area you are interested in purchasing your home in and will help you negotiate the price with the seller in order to get you the best possible deal.  When you've decided on a price for your offer, your agent will have all of the documents necessary to send your offer to the seller and will be able to guide you through all of the necessary paperwork and educate you on all applicable laws. The typical offer agreement will include some or all of the following provisions*:


  • Address and sometimes a legal description of the property

  • Sale price

  • Terms—for example, this is an all-cash transaction, or the deal is subject to you obtaining a mortgage for a given amount.

  • Seller’s promise to provide clear title (ownership)

  • Target date for closing (the actual sale)

  • Amount of earnest money deposit accompanying the offer—whether it’s a check, cash or a promissory note—and how the earnest money will be returned to you if the offer is rejected (or kept as damages if you back out of the deal for no good reason)

  • Method by which real estate taxes, rents, fuel, water bills and utilities are to be adjusted (prorated) between buyer and seller

  • Provisions about who will pay for title insurance, survey, termite inspections and the like

  • Type of deed that will be granted

  • Other requirements specific to your state, which might include a chance for attorney review of the contract, disclosure of specific environmental hazards or other state-specific clauses

  • A provision the buyer may make a last-minute walk-through inspection of the property just before the closing

  • A time limit (preferably short) after which the offer will expire

  • Contingencies (these are extremely important matter and discussed in detail below)


Your agent will explain each section of the offer agreement to you and ensure that you are fully aware of each provision and contigency.


*This information and more information on putting in an offer can be found at:


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