You found the perfect home and now you’re ready to buy. To begin, you and your real estate agent draft an offer to purchase, or an agreement of purchase and saleOpens a popup.. It includes details about your offer, such as price, deposit, closing date and any purchase conditions.
Consider each detail in your offer, because this agreement guides you and the seller through the home-buying process. Like a mortgage, a firm or unconditional offer to purchase is one of the most important documents you'll sign. When the seller signs your offer, you become locked into a legally binding agreement with each other.
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Before you make an offer, decide if you want to add any purchase conditions. For example, the offer could be conditional on the sale of your current home or on getting approved for a mortgage. If possible, your lawyer should review the offer before you sign it, so you understand and agree to all the clauses.
What's included in your offer:
- The amount you want to pay for the property
- A cheque, bank draft or money order for your deposit
- Items you want included in the purchase price, such as appliances, light fixtures, furniture and more
- Financial details about how you’ll pay the balance of the purchase price
- A closing dateOpens in a popup., usually 30 to 60 days from the offer date
- When the offer expires, which is sometimes within 24 to 48 hours
- Any conditions like getting a mortgage, a favourable inspection report or survey results
If the conditions aren’t met before the offer expires, the offer is null and void.
If you find a home you really love, remember that a firm offer — one without conditions — is often more attractive to the seller. That's because your offer is a sure thing and the seller is confident it will go through.
At the end of the day, you need to be comfortable with your offer and its obligations. Making an offer is a big step, but home ownership can be a great reward. Good luck.