OK, You have saved, gotten your credit in top shape, thought about where you want to be and now you are finally ready to make an offer on your new house.
The first thing to do is to familiarize yourself with the contract and addendums:
- AS IS Residential Contract For Sale And Purchase
- CR-1_A Condominium Association Disclosure – PDF
- CR-1 Homeowners’ Association – Community Disclosure – PDF
- CR-1 Short Sale Approval Contingency – PDF
- CR-1 FHA-VA – PDF
- CR-1 Lead-Based Paint Disclosure – PDF
Ask your agent any questions you have about the Contracts BEFORE the day you are signing them. You should know what to expect of your agent and the agent for the Seller. Most Buyers, and the Sellers for that matter, will be represented by their agents as Transactional Broker.
TRANSACTION BROKER RELATIONSHIP.—A transaction broker provides a limited form of representation to a buyer, a seller, or both in a real estate transaction but does not represent either in a fiduciary capacity or as a single agent. The duties of the real estate licensee in this limited form of representation include the following:
(a)Dealing honestly and fairly;
(b)Accounting for all funds;
(c)Using skill, care, and diligence in the transaction;
(d)Disclosing all known facts that materially affect the value of residential real property and are not readily observable to the buyer;
(e)Presenting all offers and counteroffers in a timely manner, unless a party has previously directed the licensee otherwise in writing;
(f)Limited confidentiality, unless waived in writing by a party. This limited confidentiality will prevent disclosure that the seller will accept a price less than the asking or listed price, that the buyer will pay a price greater than the price submitted in a written offer, of the motivation of any party for selling or buying property, that a seller or buyer will agree to financing terms other than those offered, or of any other information requested by a party to remain confidential; and
(g)Any additional duties that are mutually agreed to with a party.
Please remember that Realtors are there to show you property and guide you through the home buying process but they can NOT do it all for you. They are allowed to fill in pre-printed forms and negotiate these terms with the Seller most of the time through their Realtor. Please understand that the Realtor is not a party to the sales contract and technically speaking once contracts are signed their job is over.
Also, you should know that all real estate agents in Florida are assumed to represent the consumer as a “Transactional Broker” unless it is disclosed otherwise. The consumer is BOTH the Buyer and the Seller. The owner, the listing agent and the selling agent are REQUIRED to “disclose all known facts that materially affect the value of the residential property which are not readily observable to the buyer.” Do NOT speak freely to the Realtor for the Seller. All communication should go through your agent.
How will you be taking title? 90% of us take title personally or if we’re married as husband & wife. CLICK HERE for detailed information on how to take title.
BEFORE you make an offer:
- Get a copy of the property disclosure, if available, from the listing agent. This is a form which assists the Owner of residential property in complying with the requirement to disclose.
- Check the Florida sexual predators list at https://offender.fdle.state.fl.us/offender/
- Get a pre-approval or a pre-qualification from you mortgage broker.
- Be prepared to show ‘proof of funds’ if your offer is not contingent upon financing for the full purchase price IN YOUR NAME.
- Check the property appraiser’s website to make sure all the names of the owners are on the Contract.
Making the Offer:
- Sign, initial AND DATE all documents. If there are counter offers then be certain to date every time a term on the counter offer is changed.
- Make the escrow deposit.
- Make note of the the Effective Date of the Contract. For the FAR BAR As-Is, be conservative and use the last date on the Contract. Basically, this is the when all parties came to an agreement as to what the terms of the Contract are. This is date from which time frames are computed. If you have a 10 day inspection period and/or a 30 day financing contingency period then this is the first day (day 0) of these time frames. Be careful of addendums used on REO properties as they often specify that the inspection period begins when the contract is approved which is not the same as a fully signed and executed contract returned to the Buyer.