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How Often Do Contingent Offers Fall Through?

A contingent offer is when a buyer puts an offer down on a home, however, there are conditions that need to be met before the offer is set in stone. The contingency gives the buyer the opportunity to back out of the offer if the conditions are not met. 

When a contingent offer is made, the seller has the option to accept, reject, or counter. With contingencies, the goal is to reach an agreement between the buyer and seller that benefits both parties. So, how often do contingent offers fall through and how long can homes stay in contingent status? Keep reading for some insight from a Waltham Realtor!


How long can a house stay in a contingent status?

The length of contingency periods is different for everyone. Each contingent offer is unique and depends on what type of contingencies are in the offer. However, you can expect contingent periods to likely last anywhere from 10-45 days. Waltham Realtors say a home will officially be out of contingent when all the contingencies are met and the buyer can officially close on the home. 


Why do buyers sometimes back out of offers?

There are many different reasons why a buyer might back out of buying a home. Waltham Real Estate Agents say the most common reasons include: 

  • The appraisal shows that the home is of lower value than what the seller is asking for. If the seller does not lower the price, a buyer might not move forward with their offer. 

  • The inspection comes back with too many fixes that need to be made and the buyer is not interested in being responsible for those repairs. 
  • The buyer might not have secured their financing. They might not have received approval for a loan which results in them not being able to pay for the home. 
  • The buyer is not successful with selling their current home therefore cannot yet move forward with purchasing a new one. 


Can a seller back out of a contingent offer? 

Yes, the seller can technically back out of a contingent offer. Before they agree to the offer, they have the option to reject or counter the original offer with terms of their own. However, if the offer is accepted and the contingencies are met, they might run into some legal or financial complications. 

Sellers also have the option to put a kick-out clause in place. A kick-out clause is a contingency that protects the seller. It allows the seller to keep their home on the market during a contingent offer. If the seller happens to get another offer, they will then give the original buyer a specific time in which they need to close by. If the buyer does not close by that time, the seller can “kick them out” and accept the new offer. 


Work with a Waltham Realtor

More offers than not end up being in contingency and out of all contingent offers, usually, less than 5% end up falling through. At the end of the day, the main goal is for the buyer and seller to have a fair agreement so that the process goes smoothly for both parties. 

If you’re ready to buy or sell your Waltham home, contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent today! Waltham Realtors have the knowledge to assist you if you make or receive a contingent offer. You’ll have expertise by your side throughout your whole buying or selling process. Get in touch today! 617-968-0022

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