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Real Estate Purchase Agreement


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Seller Initials ____________  Buyer Initials ____________ Page of

Real Estate Purchase Agreement for Virginia

THIS SALES AGREEMENT (the "Agreement") dated this ________ day of ________________, ________ (the "Execution Date")


(the "Seller")



(the "Buyer")


The Seller wishes to sell a certain completed home and the Buyer wishes to purchase this completed home.

IN CONSIDERATION OF and as a condition of the Seller selling the Property and the Buyer purchasing the Property and other valuable consideration, the receipt and sufficiency of which consideration is acknowledged here, the parties to this Agreement (individually the "Party" and collectively the "Parties") agree as follows:

  1. Property
  2. The property is situated at _________________________________ and the legal description of the property is as follows: _________________________________________________________________________________, which includes fixtures and improvements located on the property and all rights, privileges and appurtenances associated with it, including but not limited to permits, easements, and cooperative and association memberships (the "Property").
    The remainder of this document will be available when you have purchased a license.

Last updated December 28, 2023

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What is a Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

A Real Estate Purchase Agreement is a contract that outlines the terms and conditions of a residential property sale.

Prospective buyers (or their agents) can submit this document as an offer to a seller, who may then negotiate terms before signing and accepting the deal.

For a less comprehensive contract that’s better suited for back-and-forth negotiations, you can also use LawDepot’s Offer to Purchase Real Estate.

A Real Estate Purchase Agreement is also known as a:

  • Real Estate Sales Contract
  • Home Sale Contract
  • Real Estate Purchase Contract

Who needs a Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

Use a Real Estate Purchase Agreement for any type of residential property sale, including previously owned homes or newly built homes (where construction is complete before the contract’s closing date).

You can use a Real Estate Purchase Agreement when:

  • You’re a real estate agent representing a client
  • The transaction is between family members
  • The seller finances the buyer’s purchase
  • You’re conducting a private sale

LawDepot’s Real Estate Purchase Agreement contains terms for seller financing if needed. However, you can also use a Contract for Deed (sometimes called a Land Contract), which is a property sales contract that has more emphasis on the seller financing arrangement. 

How do I fill out a Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

1. Describe the property

Include the legal land description of the property, which you can obtain from your county clerk-recorder office. Also, add descriptions of any furniture or fixtures inside the building. 

State the general condition of the property and any disclosures required by state or federal law. For example, property sales in California must disclose whether the property is located within two miles of an airport or is affected by certain contaminants.

The questionnaire for LawDepot’s Real Estate Purchase Agreement prompts you to include any disclosures that may apply to the property, including state-regulated disclosures. 

2. Provide buyer and seller details 

Include the full names, addresses, and phone numbers for both the buyer and the seller. You can add multiple buyers or sellers if needed.

3. Establish the sale details

You’ll need to decide:

  • The total purchase price 
  • The amount that the buyer will deposit
  • When the deposit is due
  • Who will hold the deposit until the end of the deal 

If the buyer requires financing, include the type of financing and the total cost of the loan. 

4. Set conditions on the sale

The sale agreement may be subject to common contingencies, such as the buyer being approved for financing or the sale of another property. If the conditions are not met by the closing date, the buyer or seller may cancel the contract. 

You can also require a new land survey for title insurance purposes. Alternatively, you can ask the seller to provide a statement saying they’re unaware of any property changes since the last survey. 

5. Add final details

Choose a closing date for the sale to become final. You can also specify whether the buyer will take possession on this date or if they'll temporarily lease the property.

Real estate transactions typically allow some time between the offer and the closing date. This gives the buyer and seller the opportunity to address the conditions and arrange financing.

6. Outline tactics for conflict resolution

If there are any unresolved disputes that you need to address before the closing date, you can specify whether the parties should go through mediation or arbitration. These tactics for conflict resolution both involve a neutral third party to oversee the issue. A mediator helps facilitate a compromise, whereas an arbitrator decides what the outcome should be (and in this case, the result is binding on the parties).

How can I finance a real estate purchase?

There are four ways to finance a home in a Real Estate Purchase Agreement. The option you choose depends on the buyer and seller's financial positions.

1. Third-party financing 

A bank or other lending institution provides a loan the buyer must repay over time. This is the most common way to purchase a new home, but approval depends on the buyer's credit rating, job history, and current financial situation.

2. Seller financing 

Sometimes, a seller provides financing to a buyer who’s unable to obtain a loan from a financial institution. This is often the case when a seller has paid off their mortgage and a buyer pays them a certain amount in intervals until the home is paid in full.

3. Assumption

A buyer can assume (i.e., take over) the seller's mortgage. In this case, the home loan transfers to their name, taking financial responsibility for the remainder of the mortgage. The lender may only permit the buyer to assume the mortgage under specific guidelines. 

4. No financing 

The buyer doesn’t need a loan but pays for the residential property fully using their funds.

What are other financial terms in a Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

Earnest money 

This is the deposit that a buyer pays to the seller to show their commitment to purchasing a residential property. 

Once all conditions are met and the deal closes, the seller credits the earnest money to the buyer’s down payment. 

If the sale falls through, the seller typically returns the money to the buyer. This might be the case if the seller defaults or because a condition wasn’t met (e.g., the house inspection was not satisfactory).

Although, if the buyer defaults, the seller may keep the money as liquidated damages.

Down payment

This is the amount of money that a buyer puts towards the total purchase price of a home to qualify for a loan from a financial institution. 

In 2021, the median down payment on a house was 12% of the total home purchase price. The size of a down payment influences the type of loan a financial institution will approve; it typically comes from the buyer’s savings or proceeds from the sale of their primary residence. 


When you purchase a property, a third party known as an escrow agent holds the earnest money until the closing date. An escrow agent is a neutral third party, such as an individual or a financial institution. Typically, the buyer and the seller evenly split escrow fees associated with their Real Estate Purchase Agreement. 


These are the yearly homeowner costs that a buyer and seller split as their Real Estate Purchase Agreement closes. Typically, the buyer reimburses the seller for any prepaid expenses during the time that the seller does not own the property. For example, prorated fees can include:

  • Property taxes
  • Homeowner association fees
  • Maintenance fees
  • Home assessments
  • Utility charges

Do I need to notarize my Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

Although you don’t need to notarize your Real Estate Purchase Agreement, the buyer and seller should sign the contract in front of a witness. The witness should be a neutral third party and should also sign the contract on its execution page. 

How do I cancel a Real Estate Purchase Agreement?

You can include a term in your Real Estate Purchase Agreement that gives a buyer the option to terminate the contract for any reason after signing. A seller may grant this right in exchange for a termination fee, which may be credited to the purchase price when closing the deal. 

In this case, you should specify the time frame for a party to terminate the contract; this time frame should not be less than any statutory right to terminate. LawDepot’s Real Estate Purchase Agreement template provides some guidance in this regard so that you can create a contract that abides by the laws of your selected state. However, you should consult a lawyer or refer to your state’s civil codes regarding property sales for further clarification. 

State laws also outline situations that allow a buyer to terminate the contract legally after signing. For example, a buyer might cancel their offer to purchase when a seller fails to disclose certain facts about the property's condition. 

Related Documents:

  • Land Contract: documents a real estate loan between a buyer and seller, where the deed transfers to the buyer once the debt is paid.
  • Deed of Trust: transfers the title of real property to a neutral trustee until the borrower pays off the loan.
  • Warranty Deed: guarantees that the title to a property is free from any interests held by others, such as liens.
  • Quitclaim Deed: transfers a title or whatever interest the owner (grantor) may have in a property to another person (grantee) without any warranties of title.
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