Writing a Real Estate Contract
Once you’ve found the home you’d like to purchase, it’s time to write out a contract. The real estate purchase contract varies from location to location. If you are working with a real estate agent, he or she will probably use the standard contract that is approved by the local Board of Realtors. Buyers who are not using a real estate agent can obtain a real estate purchase contract from a local attorney.
Whether you are using a real estate agent or handling the purchase agreement on your own, these 16 major items should be included:
- The full legal description of the property (should include street address).
- The amount of earnest money.
- The length of time the offer is valid.
- The projected closing date.
- The owner’s and seller’s name(s).
- The names to appear on the Deed.
- The purchase price.
- The name of the person or agency that will be holding the earnest money.
- The financing details.
- A detailed description of the items each of the parties has agreed to pay for as conditions of the sale.
- Title warranty.
- The inspection contingency.
- The damage clause (spells out who is responsible for any damage to the house while under contract).
- The default statement (if buyer backs out of the deal, the seller keeps the earnest money).
- Other stipulations or items clause (lists any verbal agreements between the buyer and seller).
- Signatures and date.