Due Diligence & Earnest Money Explained

You have finally finished looking for homes and made an offer on one you liked! Your offer was accepted and you are now under contract…what next?

First, you will enter into a due diligence period once the contract is binding. It’s common for buyers to give the sellers a sum of money to show that they are interested in further investigating if the home is right for them. This amount of money can be anywhere from $1000 to 3% of the purchase price and is non-refundable to the buyer. During this due diligence period, you will essentially do your homework on the home. Your realtor will schedule a home inspection and an appraisal. Once those are complete, your realtor will then request that the buyer remedy the issues found in the home…either repairing problems found or giving an allowance for repair. The buyer is given until 5PM on the last day of the due diligence period to decide if they want to continue further with the home purchase.

In addition, when you make an offer on your new home you will typically include and earnest money. Earnest money is similar to due diligence in the fact that it shows the seller that you are a motivated buyer. Earnest money, unlike due diligence can be refunded if the deal falls through. Earnest money is also held in an escrow account and is credited to the buyer at closing.

Both earnest money and due diligence are likely to be encountered when buying or selling a home. It is important to have a realtor that you trust to help you better understand these parts of your contract and walk you through the process. If you need assistance buying or selling a home, please visit http://www.markstewardteam.com. You can search homes in the Triangle all the way to the Carolina coast as well as international


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