The Seller’s Guide to Attorney Review Period

When an offer is accepted and the sales contract is signed by both parties (buyer and seller), the contract is forwarded to the attorneys for both parties and a three day attorney review period begins. Please note that this period is often extended, when the attorneys mutually agree.

During these three days, the attorneys review the contract and make any changes that are necessary. This time period also gives the seller and buyer additional time to reconsider the deal. At any time during this review period, either party can simply change their mind and walk away from the deal.

Sometimes, a buyer will visit your open house on a weekend, make an offer, and sign a contract. When attorney review begins on Monday, they may use those three days to view new listings . If a buyer finds a more attractive house or deal, they can rightfully walk away from your deal.

On the flip side of that, you as the seller can continue to market and show your home during the review period as well. During attorney review period, the property is not considered sold or off the market. Your real estate agent must present you with any new signed offers that are received during this time. As the seller, you can negotiate and accept another offer during this period. If this is the case, it is often wise (and  courteous) to let your original buyer know and give them the opportunity to make a counteroffer. Or you can keep these offers as back-ups, in the event your deal falls through. Keep in mind, if your deal includes a provision that agrees your realtor will stop showing your property during attorney review, in good-faith, they will probably abide by that promise.

Offers received after the attorney review period ends are still required to be presented to you by your agent, but you can no longer back out of your original deal. Instead, keep these offers as back-ups, in case your sale falls through for other unforeseen reasons.

Because of the time-sensitive nature of the deal, for a motivated seller with a good offer, it is imperative to find a good attorney who is available and accessible throughout those days. It is also wise to find an attorney that will not charge you excessively if your contract never makes it out of the three day review period.

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