What happens if I back out of the deal when buying a home?

Is there a way to back out of the deal when I’m buying a house? What happens if I back out of the deal? How much earnest money will I lose? findwell agent Lauren GeRoy discusses these questions in the latest installment of Ask an Agent.

Q: Is there a way to back out of the deal when I’m buying a house?

A: Once your offer has been accepted, we do have contingencies in place to protect you throughout the process, should you need to get out of the contract for some reason. The first one is typically the inspection contingency which is usually a 5-10 day window of time when you have the property inspected and could back out if you found something that you are unhappy with or if you found a property that you liked better. After the inspection period, it is very difficult to get you out of a contract, so it’s best to make sure that you are moving forward and really do want the property during that inspection period.

Q: What happens if I back out of the deal?

A: Should you decide after the inspection period that you no longer want the home, or if there was some other extenuating circumstance that were to happen and you needed to back out, you could put your earnest money at risk to the seller once your inspection contingency is over.

Q: How much earnest money will I lose?

A: There is no set amount of earnest money that you have to put down. Your real estate agent can help you decide what is appropriate for each individual situation. If it’s multiple offers, the more earnest money you put down, the stronger the buyer you appear to be, so strong earnest money is definitely helpful in a multiple offer situation.