If you’re in the process of buying a home, then you’ve seen the term “Sale Pending” or “Pending Offer”. But what does this mean and how long does it take?

Read more to learn about how long an offer may stay in the “Pending” status before the keys are handed over.

What does it mean?

The term can vary. It means there is an “accepting and binding contract” between both the buyer and the seller. It symbolizes that both parties have signed a contract and are ready to move forward.

However, there’s often boxes that need to be checked before the sale can go through. An offer is “pending” because there are items that have not been completed for the contract to close. This can be anything from contingencies of purchase, repairs, inspections, etc.

How long does it take?

Typically, if the buyer is getting a loan, it takes 30 to 60 days to close the contract. If the buyer is paying cash, it can close as fast as a week. The amount of time an offer remains “pending” will depend on the exact terms of the contract.

The bottom line is that pending offers tend to last anywhere between a week and two months. But, delays can always happen.

What will postpose the process?

There are many things that can cause a “pending offer” to sit in limbo. This includes inspections, surveys, appraisals, financing, etc. Below are a few common obstacles.

Repairs are a common reason to postpone closing a contract. The majority of the time, both parties are in agreement. But like any contract, hostility can arise. This is when legal counseling is suggested.

Financing is another obstacle. If the buyer and seller agree, pending offers can be pushed due to financing issues. For example, if the seller needs more time before leaving the home and requests a longer period between contract to closing, the buyer would have to agree to the terms.

How can you speed up the process?

Be organized and have a good real estate agent. This sounds too good to be true right? Having a good and attentive real estate agent can make or break a pending status.

Before picking just any agent, do a little research. Hire an agent that is organized and patient. You will want someone that is willing to help you complete your half of the contractual to-do list. While also making sure that the other party is doing their part as well.

It’s a tedious process and both sides of the party must complete steps along the way. Staying organized and on top of things can make for a smooth contract to closing process.


So, get organized and understand the contract to closing process so that you can take control of your home buying/selling experience.