In a perfect world the buyer & seller would be present ... however, that is only in a perfect world!!! A buyer MUST sign the purchase & sale agreement first because after all until both parties sign it is only an offer to purchase.
Best of luck!
Erin DIaz, Broker ~ Owner
In any event, nothing is fully valid until signed by both parties, no matter which one signs first.
Your mom really should have a lawyer representing her, or at least a Realtor to guide her through. Good luck
Typically the Realtor representing the Buyer will draw the intial offer to purchase contract, sign it and then the Realtor will present the offer to the listing Realtor - who then will present to the Sellers. If the Seller's agree on the price and terms, then the Seller's will sign and reverse the paperwork flow back to the Buyers.
If the Seller's want to make changes to the initial offer, then working with their Realtor, a counter offer will be drafted to be reviewed by the Buyer... this negotiation period can go back and forth as many times until neither party wants to negotiate further, or they both sign and the neogtiated contract is ratified, along with a deposit to be held in escrow.
Many people want to try to sell their home themselves - but my advise is to use a licensed Realtor. It only makes sense to have representation. If the there is a Realtor representing the Buyer and a Realtor representing the Seller- often negotiations are much smoother, emotions can be held at bay, and is just a much better experience for all parties.
I asked the same question years ago and an attorney told me that the most important thing to know and remember is the person who signs and dates the contract last starts the effective date of the contract.
It is amazing how few people are aware of this, especially in contract situations where there is a dispute. Another great tip is to make sure that when you strike out (use one line only) anything in a contract have all parties initial and date. If clean contracts need to be created, always keep the original contract for future reference.