One of the most important terms in any contract is the deposit, i.e. the payment of money by the buyer towards the purchase price ahead of closing. The deposit is usually held in trust with the buyer’s brokerage and provides a kind of guarantee the buyer will follow through with the purchase. Contrary to popular belief, the seller cannot automatically claim the deposit if the buyer fails to close. Remember, the deposit is held in trust for both parties – this means both parties must either agree on how this deposit it’s to be dispersed or settle in court. The amount of the deposit is a matter of negotiation. Obviously, sellers prefer a larger deposit, while buyers like to keep it at a minimum The industry standard is 5% of the purchase price. The timing of the deposit may also be negotiated, but it’s often tendered upon removal of all buyer subject conditions. More questions on deposits?

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Some sellers may be tempted to try a discount brokerage. These companies offer cheaper listing fees, usually on the condition they are not required to provide any agency services or real estate advice. Some don’t even have a real estate license. Wait – isn’t that exactly what you need? Selling your home is likely the most important financial transaction in your life. Who will help you set the price, stage your home, qualify the buyers, proof read the offers, negotiate on your behalf and make sure the terms on the contract are fair and legal? Only a full-service, licensed Agent can provide those services. Red Adair, the famous oil rig fire firefighter, once said: “If you think hiring a professional is expensive, try hiring an amateur!” Our Agents are fulltime trained professionals. They have the knowledge, skills – and the real estate license – necessary to protect your interests.

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