A Contract IS a Contract
In my market we all work with a 9 page contract that many wise people have spent hours drafting and perfecting. It deserves respect. It is legally binding. It has moving parts and time lines to manage . Real Estate agents are not attorneys , so hire a lawyer if there is any level of confusion. In my experience the single item that is ignored mostly is the response time. I have many clients with law degrees and this just baffles them. Simply put, if the response time is 9 pm on Sunday September 14th 2014 , you are out of contract after that time without further time sensitive documentation. A new buyer can swoop in . Another date is the close of escrow date, dismissed by lenders often. They are aware that we have a cure period and I swear they add that 3 day window onto their delivery date. Deciding as a seller you just do not want to sell 3 days before close of escrow because " possession is 9/10's of the law" will not fly. Begging for your earnest money to be returned as a buyer after all contingencies have been met and loan docs arrive will not work. You signed a legally binding contract , if you can not perform you will be sued by every party to the contract. Even though the purchase of residential real estate has become an investment it is still an emotional buy for most people. It was your home with all those memories as a seller or it is going to be your home for all those adventures as a buyer. Be positive this is what want before you sign.