Negotiating the Contract


The very first thing to remember when we get a contract, is that there will be TWO SETS OF NEGOTIATIONS ON YOUR HOME. After we finalize the price, close date, and all the other items on the contract process, we will be in the “Option period”. FOR A STEP BY STEP EXPLANATION OF THE CONTRACT GO TO THE “CONTRACT PROCESS, STEP BY STEP” in the Buyer’s Guide section. The option period is the most dangerous time in the contract process. Both sides have an agreement for the contract, and mentally many people think everything is done. Nothing could be further from the truth. We have a long way to go. The buyers are going to bring in an inspector to go over the home. Most inspections are very through, lasting between two to four hours. Keep this in mind, many inspectors not wanting to be sued, will point out almost anything they come across as a potential problem. If you have someone who has not purchased many homes and is unsophisticated, the pages of potential problems will push them to do one of two things. Ask you the seller to make lots of repairs or they will simply cancel the contract. Remember the buyer can back out of the contract during the option period for any reason and still get their earnest money back. You keep the option money, not the earnest money. A good inspector will point out what is important to repair and what is not. But we can’t count on the buyer having a good inspector.

Your negotiating skills will now be put to the test & this is where I help a lot. I do this all the time & have years of experience. The negotiations can be  very complicated and we typically have a time element that comes into play. Usually the buyer is given somewhere around 7 days for an option period. Let’s say their inspector is busy until the 3rd day of the option. And they give us their amendment of what they want repaired on the 4th day. They may ask us to repair/replace items or give them cash so they can do it on their own. Or there may be items that the inspector says are not functioning and they want to know why, so a specialist will have to look at it. It may also be a combination of all three of these. We may counter some of their requests before everyone agrees on things consuming another day or two. But before we can agree, sometimes you will want to have bids to see what you are agreeing to repair/replace is going to cost. That means we have to bring in say a plumber or electrician or other vendor to give us bids. The clock is ticking, we have to give them an answer before the option period is up. Or we have to see if they will agree to an extension. A lot has to happen in a period of 2 or 3 days. Many contracts fall apart at the end of the option period. Again this is where my experience will be invaluable to you.

Keller Williams closes twice as many homes as our nearest competitor. So to get the homes to close we have to be pretty good at negotiating all the details too.  And we are!

Once all the contract details and the counter are negotiated, we will walk you thru everything that needs to be done. If we need to have repairs, I will help you find reliable contractors. And I will be there to see all the details are attended to. I have a great title company with a closer with years of experience to help us.