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27 Nov 2012
Contingencies are an important part of buying a home in Sequim or Port Angeles. In fact, once you arrive at mutual acceptance on the price, that just completes the first phase of your negotiations. Completing a home inspection, a septic inspection, a well inspection, and perhaps follow-up inspections will lead to the second phase of negotiations if there are items to be repaired or if major problems are discovered that were not previously revealed. How you handle inspections and negotiate with the seller in this second phase could make or break your deal.
It is critical for your own protection as a buyer that the language used to describe the contingencies (and the request for repairs or a credit) be articulated without ambiguities. The last thing you need is to get into a legal dispute over what was intended, and if you leave any ambiguities, you could lose your transaction in a dispute. Notice how clean and concise and without ambiguities the language is in this Notice to the Seller. There must be only one way to interpret every single sentence, so there will be absolutely no possibility that there could be a misinterpretation. This language does exactly that.
Attached as Exhibit 1 is a copy of the Home Inspection Report. Attached as Exhibit 2 is a list of the issues of primary concern to Buyers. Attached as Exhibits 3 and 4 are two bids for window replacement in the Sun Room. Attached as Exhibits 5 and 6 are the well report and the estimate to replace the well pump and repair the water softener. Buyers request that Seller address all items on Exhibit 2 to Buyer’s satisfaction, or in the alternative that Seller credit Buyers $3,000 at closing, which is less than the actual repair costs of all items in the Inspection Reports.
Contingencies can finalize your home purchase and bless you with a pleasant and exciting experience you will remember for the rest of your life. But if not handled correctly with great attention to detail and with the experience to draft legal clauses with precision, you could end up in trouble or find out after closing that you have some huge repair bills you did not anticipate. Handling contingencies is just as important as reaching mutual acceptance on the price in the first place.
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