Big Changes Coming To The Real Estate Purchase Contract in VA/DC/MD

Beginning the first of the year, our regional sales contract, which is used in Virginia, DC, Maryland and West Virginia, will have some major changes that will affect both buyers and sellers. I’ve done various posts on parts of the contract and how they play into the process, some parts remain the same, but you’ll find below the major changes you’ll want to be aware of:

1. Everything is “AS IS.” Before, the seller had to provide a warranty to conditions of  certain things and provide them in “normal working order,” which included appliances, heating and cooling equipment, plumbing, smoke detectors, light fixtures, etc. NOW, everything is a negotiable repair item, assuming you do a home inspection.

2. Each loan type as a separate form. Whether you’re doing a VA, FHA, or Conventional loan, each has separate addendum that covers the basics of the loan type, including interest rates, loan amounts, and any seller subsidies.

3. Each Jurisdiction has a separate form. Some contingencies and laws are different from state to state, so if you’re buying in DC there’s a a DC Jurisdictional and if you’re buying in VA there’s a VA Jurisdictional, etc.

4. Use of Electronic Signatures authorization. There used to be a separate form that authorized the use of digital signatures on contract documents, but now they’ve included a paragraph in the regional sales contract which parties can initial in order to authorize the use of  them.

There are various other changes that mostly include wording and placement, but if you’ve bought or sold recently and plan to do so again in a few weeks, you’ll need to be aware of the new changes moving forward.