What is an Option Period?

Home Buyer Series

A lot of people ask me about the option period. What do you have to pay? What do you need to do? What happens if you want to back out? Well I have all the answers!

So you found a house you love! Yay for you! Now you submit an offer and it gets accepted! Double YAY. As soon as the other party signs the contract it is “executed.” If that word sounds big and scary it’s because it is. JK words aren’t scary. As soon as the contract is executed, your option period starts. How many days are in your option period? Time to check the contract. Most of the time it is 10 days.

So what should you do first? Start calling inspectors. Your agent should have a list of reputable inspectors, and if I am your agent I have a huge list of inspectors that are super great at inspecting things. I tell my clients to start at the top of the list and start calling! Try and find someone that can come out within the next two days.

An inspection costs anywhere from $340-380. When you meet the inspector out at your future house for the breakdown, bring that check with you!

Your inspector will give you a quick rundown on the condition of the house and any problems they noticed. They will also send you an official report later on that is very official with official inspection words.

So you got the inspection and the inspector says “Good news! This house is perfect! There is absolutely nothing broken!” That will probably never happen in the history of home buying. But if it does, good job you are done.

Instead your inspector will probably tell you “Well the house could collapse at any minute and it’s a miracle the roof has not caved in and the plumbing is leaking under the house and I found a dinosaur in the attic.” That scenario is actually way more likely. But do not fear little baby bird home buyer! Time to ask for repairs! You can ask for whatever you want, but that doesn’t mean the seller will do it.

So what happens if you can’t agree on repairs? Well that is what the option period is for silly head! You have the right to terminate for any reason during the option period. So you can politely so thanks but no thanks house seller. You will still be out the money for the inspection and you will not get the option fee back (about $100) but at least you didn’t buy a house with a dinosaur in the attic.

So there you go. Option Period. See it’s not that complicated!

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