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June 15, 2023

The Seller Has Accepted Your Offer—Now What?!

What actually happens after you go in contract on a property isn’t typically foremost on home buyers’ minds—until they land in contract, and their world starts spinning.

The first week to ten days after “ratification” (seller accepting your offer) require a juggling act. Here are the five things you should be prepared to do:

1. Wire your deposit into the escrow account. You’ll need to wire in your good faith deposit (typically 3% of the purchase price) within two days of offer acceptance. Make sure that deposit money is liquid so there are no delays. And call the escrow officer to verify any wiring instructions sent prior to initiating the wire. Fraud is rampant in the real estate industry and you don’t want your deposit to end up in the wrong hands. You can alternatively drop a check off at the title company office. Most people wire funds.

2. Submit outstanding financial documentation to your lender. Your lender will invariably need updated financial documentation in order to get your loan package approved. If you’re working within a short loan  contingency timeframe, you’ll want to deliver those docs to the lender within a day or so of the request. If you’re deciding among multiple lenders, make your final decision within a day or two to avoid delays.

3. Conduct your inspections. You’re going to have to quickly get inspections on the calendar if you didn’t pre-schedule them. This will require some flexibility and probably time away from work during the week. Once you have the inspections and review written reports, you’ll be asked to address the contingency—either removing it, or negotiating any repairs or credits—as per your contractual deadline.

4. Sign outstanding disclosures. You may have signed a bulk of seller disclosures and reports up front, but there will be more. Be sure you set time aside to review what comes in.

5. Address your contingencies. Make sure you’re aware of your deadlines and can respond to any remaining conditions (loan, appraisal, inspection, disclosures). You’ll have to ultimately sign and submit contingency removal forms to the seller to officially clear your contractual conditions. Your Realtor should be on top of things and managing the process, so it shouldn’t be all up to you to know when to deal with the individual milestones.

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