Real Estate Deposits

09 September 2015

When writing or accepting an offer, one thing that can often go unnoticed is the deposit, more specifically, when the deposit is due.

In the offer the deposit is required either ‘herewith”  or ‘upon acceptance’. Herewith means attached to the offer. Upon acceptance means what it says, when you have a deal. That is what most agents put in their offers. However, below the deposit payment it explains that the deposit must be paid within 24hrs. If you don’t’ the agent is subject to discipline, but that’s it. The offer is not dead, because the deposit is not a condition.

In our brokerage, we have a separate clause that says ‘if the deposit is not received within 48 hours, the seller, at their option, may cancel the deal’ using that clause, the deal is definitely dead. So why are we focusing on deposit deadlines? More and more deposits are coming in by wire transfer. This takes longer than 24 hours, and closer to 48 hours. Good agents know this and write into their offer that the deposit is not paid upon acceptance but within 3 business days.