Selling Guide

Accepting the Offer

An offer specifies the price the buyer is willing to pay for your property, any conditions that may be applied or attached by the buyer, the date that the buyer would like to take possession of the property and when the offer expires. As an act of good faith, the buyer will generally make a deposit with the offer.

You don't have to accept the offer as is. You might wish to make a counter offer that will go part-way towards meeting the offer's conditions or price. The counter offer is one more step along the way to negotiating the final terms and conditions of the sale. Once a satisfactory offer has been made, and is signed by everyone, it becomes a binding contract. Make sure you understand and agree to all of the terms set forth in the offer. You may want to have it reviewed by your lawyer before signing.

Before closing, especially if the buyer makes it a condition of sale, you may be asked to provide a current survey, or a "real property report", showing that the location of the house is on the property owned by you and that there are no encroachments.

The buyer's lawyer will conduct a title search to see if there are any liens on the property, easements, rights of way or height restrictions. Especially in rural areas, you may also be asked to provide a certificate for a well or septic system, stating the system meets local standards. The buyer may also make the purchase conditional on an inspection by a qualified engineer or home inspector.

Once the conditions set forth in the offer have been met or waived, it is now a firm deal and you can prepare for your move, looking forward to Closing Day.

Next: Closing the Deal