The Real Estate Purchase Contract

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The contract we use to convey real estate has changed over the years.

The agreement we use today in most transactions was formulated by the Arizona Association of Realtors with the help of members’ input and legal counsel.

In 1980s, the real estate purchase contract was a simple one-page form.

Today, the “Residential Resale Real Estate Purchase Contract” is 10 pages and attempts to cover any nuance that may occur in the real estate transaction.

Unfortunately, 10 pages is not enough.

We have almost 50 different forms/agreements to cover most of the conditions and disclosures that may arise in a real estate conveyance.

Also unfortunately, some things do not change.

Some people take the signing of a purchase agreement lightly and it is doubtful some even read it before signing.

We have even had people ask, “Now, if I sign this, does that mean I have to buy the house?”

Of course, we explain once again that this is a valid contract which obligates the signers and their money.

When starting your home search, a good idea is to ask your real estate agent to give you a copy of the purchase contract they will be using.

You can take the document home and read it at your leisure.

It is better to be informed in advance rather than at the last minute when you have found the perfect home and the adrenaline and emotions are running in high gear.

Sellers, you too should get a copy of the purchase agreement when you list your property for sale.

You too need to be prepared for the day when you are brought a purchase contract from a prospective buyer.

The purchase contract delineates the seller’s responsibilities and what must convey with the home.

For example, it points out that the seller must leave satellite dishes, draperies, window coverings, free-standing ranges, light fixtures and many more items.

If a seller has an attachment to a particular item that is specified to convey with the home, they would need to delineate in the listing document that the item does not convey with the home.

For most of us, a home purchase is one of the largest commitments that we make.

Due diligence by buyers and sellers will lead to a smooth and successful transaction without surprises.

Ray Pugel is a designated broker for Coldwell Banker Bishop Realty. Contact him at (928) 474-2216.

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