real estate contract terms

My favorite part of listing and selling any home is negotiating the best possible contract for our client! Preparation is a big part of the negotiation. When showing a home and advertising to multiple buyers, the goal is to have as many buyers as possible interested in our home! Often overlooked, the contract we negotiate with the buyer is a big part of the product. If the terms of the contract are prohibitive, then our sellers see a lower price. However, if the terms of the contract are attractive, our sellers see bigger prices! Here a few terms to avoid if you want to get the best price!

As-Is Sale Transactions – Many sellers would prefer to not do work before listing and selling their home.  However, many buyers don’t understand the cost of repairs or even understand how to get the repair complete.  Questions that linger in a buyer’s head generally result in lower offers or no offers at all. In most cases, the seller can complete the repair for smaller expense than what a buyer thinks the repair will cost

Tenants In Place - Only in very rare cases does a tenant want the owner to sell the house. Most tenants would prefer to remain in the home and don’t want to move. In addition, the tenant does not receive any proceeds from the sale, so the tenant has NO motivation to clean up and present the home to get a great sales price. Most buyers want to move in at close of escrow, so having a tenant in place is probably a deal killer for any owner occupant buyers.  

Longer Escrow Periods – If you have lots of stuff and may not be able to move out of your home in 30 days, you might want to consider that most buyers want a quick move into a new home. Longer escrow periods will be a deal killer for a large number of buyers. There are a variety of different strategies you can consider that will allow you to move in under 30 days. Bringing those quick move-in buyers back to the table will bring more contracts and a higher price.  

Changing the Buyer’s Financing Structure - Most buyers have consulted a lender prior to writing a purchase contract and have determined a financial structure that will work for their purchase. Part of the structure may include a request for the seller to pay some or all of the buyer’s loan costs. While most sellers don’t like to pay any extra costs, changing the structure of the contract can be a deal killer.  Instead, focus on ways to get the overall net amount of the contract up to an acceptable amount. At the close of escrow most sellers are much more interested in how much money goes into the bank, not the structure of the contract.  

Do you want to learn more about how to manage the home-selling process? Contact us at 602-753-0177 or