What is a Clean Offer when Buying a Home? A clean offer is one with few if any contingencies that could snag or cause a sale to fail.
When writing an offer to buy a home, I try to write as clean an offer as possible in order to make the terms acceptable to the seller. There are no limits to the contingencies a buyer can add to their offer. Some are fairly standard and easily accepted most of the time, but with each additional contingency a seller has a reason to say no.
Some common ones are Pending Sale, Neighborhood Review, Home Owners Association Review, Septic Inspection, Well Contingency, Title Review, General Inspection, Financing Contingency, Appraisal Contingency, Feasibility Contingency, Lead Based Paint just to name a few.
With each “escape hatch“ built into a contract a seller worries that the buyer really isn’t committed to completing the purchase. With less commitment from the buyer, the seller may hold out on price to make the risk palatable.
Now don’t get me wrong, each of these has a specific purpose and may be reasonable or even necessary to include in a given circumstance, but some may overlap and be redundant. Why add a neighborhood review which generally has a 3 day limit when you have a 7 day inspection period? Inspect the neighborhood on your own during the inspection period and use the inspection contingency if you find unacceptable information, like a meth house in the neighborhood.
Each contingency in a contract has a deadline attached to it. Exercising due diligence early on and using a contract with the least number of contingencies necessary will present a clean offer to a seller. They are more likely to accept this type of offer and may give you some price consideration as well.