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Builder Contracts – What Buyers Need to Know

March 8th, 2017 by tisner

Builder Contracts - What Buyers Need to Know

  • DEPOSITS: There are very few acceptable opportunities for the deposit to be returned to the Buyer.
  • Check the contract carefully to verify if there is a financing contingency. If there is one included pay close attention to the timeframe. Often, the time period is VERY SHORT.
  • Just as in the traditional resale contract the new construction contract will require arbitration to resolve any issues that may arise.
  • Builders NEVER guarantee a completion date. Prepare your Buyers to be ready to react quickly should the completion date be sooner than anticipated as well as be prepared for delays due to weather, materials, permits etc. Believe it or not, virtually every builder contract allows the builder TWO YEARS to complete the home.
  • Most builders require the Buyer to close on the day the certificate of occupancy is obtained. The builder will make the borrower pay a fee PER DAY if they are not able to close when the builder is ready.
  • Builders typically encourage the use of their preferred title company and lender(s). If their “preferred servicers” are selected then incentives and Buyer credits are often given at closing.
  • In most contracts, the Buyer will be responsible for paying all closing costs.
  • It is always a good idea for your Buyer to have an independent home inspector that is willing to check on the progress of the construction several times throughout the course of construction. It is imperative for the Buyer to notify the builder of any concerns immediately and keep a documented list of requested repairs or changes.
  • Most builders provide a 10 year structural warranty and a 1 year limited warranty for building imperfections. A traditional home warranty (used for resale homes) are also available for years 2-5 to cover systems and appliances, but this coverage must be initiated at the time of closing.
  • IMPORANT: No builder will EVER change one sentence, or Word, or even comma on their standard form contract. You can fill in blanks or change numbers and features, but that’s it.
  • Remember the home does not have to be perfect to close. Prepare your buyers for this!!


Oliver Title Law
Lewis V. Oliver , Esq. (“Lew”}
Florida Bar Member : 0452284
Member of the Florida Bar Since 1985


Leslie Zimmerly
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21513 Lake Underhill Rd.,
Ste. A Orlando, FL 32825

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Cell 321-337-368

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Teri Isner is the team leader of Orlando Avenue Top Team and has been a Realtor for over 24 years. Teri has distinguished herself as a leader in the Orlando FL real estate market. Teri assists buyers looking for Orlando FL real estate for sale and aggressively markets Orlando FL homes for sale.

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