Pennsylvania Real Estate Purchase Agreement

If you want to sell or buy Pennsylvania properties, then the statute of fraud states that the contract must be in writing. However, there are several legal requirements you must include. Without them, the agreement can become null and void. As such, we discuss these terms and disclosures on this page. It ensures you understand what information to add to your Pennsylvania real estate purchase agreement.

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Pennsylvania Real Estate Purchase Agreement

Writing Requirement

  • Without the following elements, a Pennsylvania purchase agreement won’t be binding in the law’s eyes.
    • First, the buyer must present a valid offer, in writing, to the seller.
    • Second, the seller must accept the buyer’s offer to purchase the agreement.
    • Third, there must be a consideration, which refers to exchanging something of value between the parties.
    • Fourth, there must be a mutual meeting of the minds, which means both parties consent to the agreement’s terms.
  • However, the above is very abstract and doesn’t cover all the information you must include. The below information is required in a valid purchase agreement:
    • Identities of the involved parties.
    • Add the contact details and addresses of the involved parties.
    • Legal description of the property.
    • The agreed-upon purchase price.
    • Detail the financing details, if available, of how buyers will pay for the property.
    • List the contingencies the parties must finalize before the purchase.
    • The closing date by which the seller will have the property transferred to the buyer after both parties have signed the agreement. Usually, this is about 45 to 90 days after both parties sign the contract.
  • Other terms are good to add, but the law doesn’t require them. Some of the most common are:
    • Earnest money deposit: This is a good faith deposit that buyers make to sellers, usually between 5% to 10% of the overall sales price. It can be refundable if the buyer meets all contingencies.
    • Termination clause: Generally, buyers can’t withdraw from a purchase agreement if they’ve already signed it. However, if there’s an early termination clause, then they can. The only other way to withdraw from the sale is if the buyer isn’t satisfied with the home inspection or can’t obtain the required financing contingency.

Required Disclosures

The last legal aspect we look at is the required disclosures. These disclosures provide the buyer with vital information, but Pennsylvania only has two (2) you must add. You must always add one, but the other depends on the property building’s age.

  • Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement: The seller must provide a statement explaining the property’s condition to the buyer. Buyers must receive this statement before or when they sign the contract.
  • Lead-Based Paint Disclosure: This disclosure only applies to properties with buildings built before 1978. If lead-based paint is present, then the seller must disclose its presence to the buyer. They must also generally explain the hazards of lead poisoning.