Active, Pending, Under Contract. Is it Conditionally Sold or Not?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Complete Realty

August 8, 2013

As a buyer, there is nothing more frustrating than finding out that the house you really want, that is showing up on, is in fact conditionally sold. "How can they do that, why is it still showing for sale?" What is active, pending, under contract? What happened to conditionally sold?

The CREB Board of Directors has recently revisited the rule and simplified the process. I won't get into the legalities of why this rule exists but it does. 

When a seller receives an offer on their home, they have 3 choices on how to report the conditional sale (A conditional sale is a sale with conditions such as financing or home inspection). CREB has created a new form with clear descriptions of each so the options are easy to understand. Here's an overview:

  1. Active. In other words, nothing changes. The seller has the option to have the conditional offer disclosed if the sellers agent is specifically asked, if a showing is requested,  or in the private remarks on the CREB MLS system. Or they can wait until they receive another offer and then during the negotiation process disclose the existence of another offer.
  2. Under Contract. The property still shows up on, it shows as "U" on the CREB MLS system and showings will be permitted.
  3. Pending. There will be a C/S sticker on the lawn sign, it shows as "P" on the CREB MLS system, the property will not be displayed on and showings will not be permitted.

While this can be very frustrating as a buyer and even as a buyers agent, as long as we're all aware of what each choice means and we are respectful of the sellers decision, it can be an easy system to understand. In the past, I have asked  if the property is under contract while requesting showings. Some buyers want to see everything, others only want to see what they can write an offer on. Of course a buyer can write an offer on a property up until the time the keys are transferred but that's a topic for another day.

As a seller, which option would you choose?