If you're searching for a home to buy in Greater Cincinnati, chances are you're using a home search site fed from Cincinnati MLS. Our own website is fed from Cincinnati MLS, and so is every major brokerage site in Cincinnati. And if you look at the national sites like Remax.com, Realtor.com and others, they're also being supplied by Cincinnati MLS via syndication. The nice thing about this is you don't have to go to multiple websites to search for all the agent listed homes for sale.
When you search these sites, you're going to find homes listed as one of either two status categories:
In a nutshell, Active means the home is NOT yet under an accepted contract. There may be offers, there may be negotiations, or it may be as chilly as Antarctica, but in theory, the home is STILL for sale.
Now if you noticed the "in theory" part, that's because there's a slight loophole. Per Cincinnati MLS rules, the listing agent has 3 days to change the status of a home with an accepted contract from Active to Pending.
But wait, there's ANOTHER possible condition that applies to an Active status home. It's possible to have an agreed upon contract and STILL leave the home Active in MLS. If the buyer has a big contingency such as needing to sell their home to buy, the buyer and seller may agree that it's acceptable for the seller to keep the home on the market in an Active status to search for a better offer that doesn't have a similar contingency. The initial agreement MAY have an option to give the original buyer 24 hours to drop their contingency and proceed with the purchase, or step aside and let the 2nd buyer have the home. Or another variation is the original buyer gets NO notice at all. A better offer comes along, seller accepts, provides notification to the first buyer that the contract is terminated, and it's adios to buyer 1.
So a little confusing isn't it?
But much like the infomercials, Wait, THERE'S MORE!!!
You may see a home with status as PENDING. What does PENDING mean?
Basically it means there IS an accepted contract between buyer and seller. If both parties perform to the requirements of the contract, that home is as good as sold (assuming no major inspection issues, financing issues or appraisal issues). If the home is PENDING, the listing agent will probably have some remarks that only agents that can see that provide a little detail:
Accepting Back Up Offers or
Set To Close
The contract closing date is also listed in the agent only visibility. What is NOT visible to agents is the contracted price or any other concessions. We will NOT know the price until the home actually completes sale.
For the most part, if a home is PENDING status, you've probably missed your opportunity. While some homes do not complete the sale, MOST do. That's just another reason it's critical to have your financial ducks in a row and get to a newly listed home quickly. If you don't, someone else just may.
Further questions about buying or selling a Greater Cincinnati home? Just give The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite a call at 513-520-5035 or email Liz@LizSpear.com.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Bill & Liz aka BLiz