Making an Offer

Making an Offer

The Formal Offer

Offers must be in writing, signed and dated by all buyers, and include the following:
  • Offer Price: how much you are agreeing to pay
  • Expiration Date: when the offer expires, if not accepted
  • Closing Date: when you can take ownership, including elimination of all contingencies
  • Deposit: the amount you will place into an escrow account to secure your offer (typically 5% - 10% of the offer price)
  • Contingencies (if any): such as mortgage financing and inspections
This is only an overview; how an actual Offer to Purchase is submitted and progresses through a transaction varies from state-to-state, and often from town-to-town. It is wise to become familiar with the offer and purchase contract practices in you market area, with legal assistance if appropriate.

Negotiating An Offer

The seller has the following options when considering offers:
  • Accept the offer as proposed
  • Reject the offer
If the seller rejects the offer, they may modify one or more terms and submit a counter offer. However, they are under no obligation to do so. Once all terms are agreed to by both parties the home inspection process begins, after which the parties proceed to execute the purchase contract (typically within 5-10 days), and begin the closing steps.