Real estate transactions have assorted time frames and constraints throughout the entire process. From having to give 24 hour notice to a tenant before you show the house to how much time you allow for acceptance of your offer to the close of escrow, time restrictions are ever present. When making an offer there are numerous time frames that are interjected into the offer and must be agreed to by the parties.
Take the time frames seriously. If you know up front that you can’t comply with a specific requested time frame be sure to counter it or amend the contract to reflect what you can do. Don’t agree to something that you know you will breach. Along the way be sensitive to the timing of things. If something gets extended be sure to get the time frame extension agreed to by the other party.
Time frames start with the acceptance for the most part. Then there is an allotted time for delivering the Earnest Money Deposit to escrow. If the Agent doesn’t have the EMD then there is a time agreed for delivery. Boiler plate time frames include the amount of time allowed to receive and review the Preliminary Title Report. This is a subtle clause that is not always met these days because of the time it takes to get a prelim sometimes.
There is a lot going on at the start of an escrow so it isn’t unusual for a time frame or two to be overlooked in the chaos. Inspections are being scheduled, loan applications submitted, appraisals ordered, escrow opened, funds transferred and more. All have their own time for completion, objection, approval, or whatever action or inaction is deemed necessary for the specific item.
Inspections are to be done and action taken within the agreed upon time frame as follows: Within the time specified above, BUYER shall deliver to SELLER, in writing, one of the following: A. approval of the inspections without requiring any repairs; OR B. approval of the inspections with a Notice of Required Repairs or an Addendum listing all required repairs. SELLER shall respond in writing to BUYER’s repair request within five (5) business days of delivery; OR C. termination of this Agreement, including an explanation how the condition revealed by any inspection, materially and/or reasonably justify such a decision.
Note that if a Buyer submits a NORR (Notice of Required Repairs) to you you have five days to respond. Don’t sit on it. If you need time to get estimates tell your Agent and have your Agent submit something in writing to the Buyer about the steps you are taking. The Seller may come back to you with an Addendum to the NORR. Again, don’t delay. Action needs to be taken if repairs are going to be made in a timely manner to close.
The close of escrow is either a date certain, or a date calculated based on an agreed on number of days after acceptance. Either way, it is to be respected. If it falls on a weekend or holiday it may go to the next business day. If you miss closing you might be considered as having breached the contract.
Our Advice: There are consequences to missed timing. Some are as severe as the contract being cancelled while others may cause you to lose optional actions. The other party may not object or react giving you time to remedy or finalize the situation. That often happens, but don’t count on it. If there is a competing offer the Seller may be looking for a reason to get out. The same applies to a Buyer that found another house. Make a timeline of the escrow to keep yourself on track. Put everything on it so you don’t miss the obvious.
Timing is critical to Buyers and Sellers. Each has their own wants and needs and are counting on a certain level of performance and compliance with the contract to plan their lives. Plan yours accordingly as well.
When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your real estate needs ... Experience is Priceless! Jim Valentine, CDPE, SFR, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-3704, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.carsonvalleyland.com.