FAQ: What Are Home Purchase Contract Contingencies?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 www.LizTour.com SAL.2002007747

buying a Cincinnati home?If you're buying or selling a home in the Cincinnati Ohio area, chances are the purchase offer will be written on a Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors standard contract.   It's written originally by real estate attorneys and there are blank spots for your agent to fill in key terms such as:

Offer price

Closing dates

Time frames


Now contingencies in the purchase contract fall into two categories:

Those built into the contract are standard language and cover critical aspects such as financing, inspection, appraisal & HOA review.

It's also possible to write in additional contingencies, but they need to be carefully constructed to be very clear (and may even necessitate having help from a real estate attorney). 

Common contingencies added might relate to:

  • The buyer's need to COMPLETE the sale of their home (they're already under contract)
  • The buyer's need to SELL their home (they're still looking for that buyer)
  • The buyer having a satisfactory showing within X days of contract acceptance (useful when the buyer has only seen the home via a Skype showing or a spouse is out of town and not coming in until a suitable home has been identified)

Like other terms in a contract, contingencies are negotiable and just adding them to the contract doesn't mean the seller has to agree.

And the buyer may opt to waive certain contingencies in an effort to win a home in a competitive bidding situation.  For instance, we've seen buyers waive the home inspection or waive the appraisal contingency.  Keep in mind that those waivers come with risks, so fully understand what COULD go wrong.

Bottom line, an experienced real estate agent can help guide you through contract contingencies and how best to use them to your advantage. 

Ready to talk about buying or selling a Warren County area home?  Just call 513-520-5305 or email Liz@LizSpear.com.  We look forward to hearing from you!

Liz and Bill aka BLiz


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Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas


The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth Spear, ABR, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2002007747

William (Bill) Spear, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2004011109  Kentucky 77938
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Bill Direct:  513-520-5305
Liz Direct: 513-265-3004     
Fax: 866-302-8418

MailTo:  Liz@LizSpear.com

Search Homes:  Https://WarrenCountyOhioRealEstate.com

Our Website:  www.LizTour.com

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Erika Rae Albert, Austin Real Estate Expert
E*Rae Real Estate Group- Brokered by eXp Realty LLC - Austin, TX
Exceeding Expectations in Every Transaction

It's so interesting to see how contracts and industry norms differ from state to state.  We have a pre-made contingency addendum form in Texas but it does not specify whether the home they need to sell is under contract yet or not...

Jun 15, 2017 08:15 PM #1
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

BLiz- good explanation of contingencies.  It also illustrates just why buyers need a buyers agent to help them with these transactions. Even if they've purchased a home before, contracts change, and real estate is local!

Jun 16, 2017 05:27 PM #2
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Liz and Bill Spear

RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
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