Making an offer on a home, in the form of a written proposal, is the first formal step toward purchasing a specific home. Together, you and your agent will write and sign the offer based on your requirements, consideration of what conditions you think the seller will accept, and your agent’s expertise related to the local and overall real estate market. The offer is essentially a blueprint for the sale and purchase of the home. Once it is accepted – as-is or in its negotiated form – it will become the home purchase agreement.

  • It will contain items such as:
  • Address and legal description of the property
  • Proposed sale price
  • Financial terms, such as if you will pay all cash or will obtain a mortgage
  • Seller’s promise to provide clear title (ownership)
  • Proposed closing date
  • Deposit. Whether paid by cash or check, this is earnest money showing that you are serious about the deal. There might also be instructions regarding return of the money if you or the seller fail to complete the transaction.
  • Proration method or formula by which certain expenses are to be prorated between you and the seller.These expenses may include items such as real estate taxes, utility bills, rent and homeowners dues.
  • Provisions regarding responsibilities for payment of expenses such as title insurance, lotsurvey, termite inspections, and so on.
  • Type of deed
  • Disclosures of conditions such as environmental and/or seismic hazards and other locally-specific clauses
  • Provision for final walk-through inspection of the property just prior to closing
  • Any contingencies