What Does Pending Mean in Real Estate?
If you're in the market to buy or sell a home, you've likely come across the terms "pending" and "contingent" in real estate listings. These terms can be confusing, especially for first-time buyers or sellers. In this article, we'll break down the differences between these two statuses and provide tips for both buyers and sellers.
Pending status means that the seller has received and accepted an offer on their home, but the deal is not yet finalized. This means that all contingencies, or conditions, have been met and the sale should close shortly. Contingent status means that the seller has accepted an offer, but there are still contingencies that need to be met before the sale can close.
Contingencies are conditions that a potential buyer can include in their offer to purchase a home. Common contingencies include inspection contingencies, financing contingencies, and appraisal contingencies. An inspection contingency allows the buyer to have a professional inspector evaluate the condition of the home before committing to the purchase. A financing contingency allows the buyer to back out of the deal if they are unable to secure a mortgage. An appraisal contingency allows the buyer to back out of the deal if the home does not appraise for the agreed upon purchase price.
For example, a property can be listed as “Contingent: Continue To Show,” which means that the seller is still accepting offers and showing the property to potential buyers, but an offer has already been accepted. Often this means the seller has an offer that may be weak on terms. In this case, the existing offer may have a clause allowing the seller to review other offers and give the current contracted buyer 24-72 hours to strengthen their offer and terms, or be replaced by another offer of the seller’s choice.
Another example is Pending Short Sale, which means that the seller is in the process of negotiating with their lender to sell the property for less than what is owed on the mortgage. Pending: More Than 4 Months is another category, which means that the sale has been pending for more than four months and may not close.
The answer is yes, but it's important to keep in mind that the seller may prefer more attractive offers, such as ones with a higher purchase price or fewer contingencies. If you do make an offer on a contingent or pending property, be prepared for the possibility that your offer may not be accepted.
One of the most important things you can do before you start house hunting is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. This will give you an idea of how much you can afford and help you make more competitive offers. When it comes to making an offer on a home, there are a few things you can do to strengthen your position. For example, you can make an earnest money deposit, which is a deposit made by the buyer to show that they are serious about purchasing the home. You can also get approved for a home loan, which shows the seller that you are financially capable of buying the home.
For sellers, one of the best things you can do is list your property on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). This is where agents access properties that are listed with other agents, increasing the chances that your home will be seen by potential buyers already qualified as ready, willing and able by a buyer agent . If you decide to go with a contingency offer, you may want to consider listing your property as Contingent: No Show. This means that you have decided not to show the property or accept other offers until the contingencies have been met.
Understanding the difference between pending and contingent statuses in real estate can be helpful when you are buying or selling a home. Pending status means that the seller has accepted an offer on their home, but the deal is not yet finalized. It is possible to make an offer on a home that is in either contingent or pending status, but the seller may prefer more attractive offers. For buyers, getting pre-approved for a mortgage and making an earnest money deposit or getting approved for a home loan can strengthen your offer. For sellers, listing your property on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and considering a Contingent: Continue To Show status can increase the chances of finding the best buyer. It's important to understand these statuses when buying or selling a home to ensure a smooth transaction process. When deciding on selling see our plans at unrealestate.com/sell and for finding that right next buy visit unrealestate.com/search.
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