Last week, I talked about what you should ask your real estate agent before you buy a home. One of these questions involved home buying contingencies. These are conditions that the buyer puts into the agreement to ensure the continuation of the transaction. Buyers can ask for just about anything as a contingency. Repairs. Replacement. Anything. But the more contingencies you place on a sale, the more likely a seller might turn your offer down. While some requests could be considered superfluous, there are a few home buying contingencies commonly added to most sales contracts.

Common San Antonio Home Buying Contingencies

Home Inspection

Common San Antonio home buying contingencies - Search homes for sale in the San Antonio areaOne of the most common San Antonio home buying contingencies we see in sales contracts is a home inspection contingency. This allows the buyer to conduct an inspection of the property. After all inspections are completed, the buyer can then go to the seller and request that necessary repairs be made. Or, they might want to negotiate the cost of the repairs into the final sale price. With a home inspection contingency, the buyer has the option to walk away from the sale if they cannot come to an acceptable agreement with the seller. If that happens, they receive their earnest money deposit back.


Another one of the most common San Antonio home buying contingencies is the financing contingency. By adding this into the sales contract, it allows the buyer to seek financing for a property. If you are unable to secure financing, this contingency allows you to walk away from the sale. Hopefully, you've already begun the pre-approval process. Even if you did, pre-approval is not final approval. There may still be issues that could slow down your loan approval. If something falls through in the underwriting, a financing contingency allows you to back out of the sale.

Home Appraisal

Banks require a home appraisal as part of the home loan process. A bank only allows a buyer to borrow the fair market value of a property. If your San Antonio home appraises for less than the sale price, a buyer needs to consider other options. First, renegotiate the sale price. As you can imagine, sellers aren't too keen on that one. Next, look for additional financing for the difference. Or, finally, step away from the deal altogether. With a home appraisal contingency, you leave the sale without any legal recourse.

Home Sale

Probably one of the most popular San Antonio home sale contingencies among buyers is the home sale contingency. If you need to sell your current home in order to buy your next home, you're going to want to include a home sale contingency in your contract. This allows you a specific amount of time to sell your home. If it doesn't happen within that time period, the home sale contingency allows you to walk away from your home purchase with your earnest money deposit. However, buyers should be aware that this contingency is highly unpopular with sellers. That's because they agree to suspend any marketing on their property while you try to sell your current San Antonio home. If you don't find a buyer, they're back to square one. So, this contingency might hinder your chances at someone accepting your offer. Talk to your San Antonio real estate agent before you include it in your offer.

Clear Title

Finally, let's discuss the title contingency. As part of the sales transaction process, a title company runs a report on past ownership of the property. They also look for liens and judgments attached to the property. This clears the way for you to take ownership once the final paperwork is signed. However, sometimes, unforeseen circumstances make a clear title difficult to ascertain. If this happens, a title contingency allows you to walk away from the sale rather than deal with paying off a debt that isn't yours or fighting someone who also lays claim to ownership of the property.

Yes. These are common San Antonio home sale contingencies. Even so, you still should keep contingencies to a minimum to facilitate a smooth sale. Discuss with your agent which contingencies should be included and which to leave out before crafting your offer to the seller.
LUX Move Up* by Christine Aldrete Banks, CRS, SRS, RSPS