What to expect once you are under contract

Congrats! We are officially under contract as of today!

Now that you are in contract, you are probably wondering what you need to do next. Here are some very important dates and useful information to keep us on target for a successful closing!

This may seem like a lot to keep track of, but a large part of my job now is to keep us on track and make sure we don’t miss any of our deadlines. So we will be in touch often just to make sure we are progressing towards a smooth and successful closing. Please call me with any questions! I look forward to working with you!

Time is on the essence and everything is based on the acceptance or execution date on the signed contract. Let’s start there.


One to four family residential contract
Sample Execution Date

The following steps should be preformed during your option period:

The acceptance date of your contract is listed on page 8 of the One to four family residential contract. All dates in the contract are based off this date. 

Option Period (Inspection Period)

The buyer is now in their option period. During this period of time they will complete their inspections and other due diligence. What can you expect?

  • The buyer will pay you the option fee within 3 days of the execution date. This payment can be deposited into your account as soon as possible. This fee is for you to keep. If the buyer moves forward with the purchase, this fee is typically credited to their closing costs. If they cancel the contract, this fee is not reimbursed.
  • The buyer will deposit their earnest funds with the title company. This must be completed within 3 days of the execution date. Once the title company receives the funds, they will send us a receipt.
  • The buyer can cancel this contract for any reason during their option period. Please do not start packing yet.
  • The buyer will contract inspector(s) to inspect your home. We will know in advance when they will be coming by. Expect this process to take 2-3 hours. You should not be present during the inspection period. Please give the buyer(s) and their inspectors privacy to review the results.
  • At times the buyer will need more time to contract further or more detailed inspections; such as, foundation, roof, septic, and well inspections. If the option period has to be extended we will be asked to sign an amendment and the buyer will pay an additional fee to extend the date.
  • Once the buyer’s inspection is complete, they will probably request repairs and/or credits. This is normal.
  • Our response to the repairs/credit request can be as follows:
    • We accept their request as is
    • We agree to a few repairs and/or credits
    • We refuse all further negotiations (this may lead to cancellation of contract)
  • The buyer typically will send us a copy of the inspection report along with their list of repairs/credits. Please note that if we are not able to reach an agreement with this buyer and the contract is cancelled, the inspection report will have to be shared with future buyers. We will also have to update the seller’s disclosures.
  • The buyer might want to tour the property a few times within their option period. I will let you know if this occurs.
  • There are certain inspections that require a seller’s permission. Normally anything that in invasive or could cause disrepair, will need prior permission. A good example of this is a detailed inspection of the HVAC system. Normally a general inspector will not open your HVAC system. They will simply look at the unit from the exterior.

Once we agree to the credit/repairs, these will all be put in writing and we will move forward.

Note: the buyer will still have until the end of their option period to cancel the contract. This can happen even after we have agreed upon a credit/repair.

What’s next? Appraisal and Survey