Do we have to accept the changes to the contract?

Asked by acd-cdt, Austin, TX Thu May 30, 2013

As a seller, if we already have a signed contract for the home sale, and the buyer comes back with more changes to the contract, do we have to accept the changes to the contract?

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Cindy Rodgers’ answer
Cindy Rodgers, Agent, Broken Arrow, OK
Wed Jun 26, 2013
I would certainly heed the advice of your Realtor but my response would be no. If you have agreed to all terms and all parties have signed the contract, then the buyer cannot expect you to simply agree to new changes or additions. However, I would weigh the changes and how they really effect the transaction and discuss with your agent if it is in your best interest to consider the changes or simply say no.
0 votes
Susie Kay, Agent, Dallas, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
No you don't, and your agent should be the 1st person that you go to for any questions. She is hired to represent you and assist you every step of the way!

Good luck,
Susie Kay, Realtor®
United Real Estate
III Lincoln Centre, 5430 LBJ Freeway #280
Dallas, TX 78240

Servicing your real estate need is my priority!
1 vote
You'd think so, but I don't have a strong advocate behind me and it's been very frustrating. I have been very unhappy with my realtor.
Flag Fri May 31, 2013
Susan J Penn,…, Agent, Weston, FL
Tue Jun 18, 2013
No, The Seller does not have to accept the changes. The contract is for the Seller and the Buyer. It is nice when both parties agree but the seller does not have to accept new changes. The real estate agents should be discussing these situations, which is why you would have a real estate agent.

Susan Penn, PA, EWM Realtor
0 votes
Curly Sue, , Texas
Thu May 30, 2013
No, of course you don't have to accept changes. Just be prepared for them to pull out.
0 votes
JOSEPH E JAR…, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
What did your Realtor say? If you do not have one, this is exactly the reason why you should have one. There are many many areas that a Realtor is schooled in and selling a house is not as simple as one might think. Getting your information on a website like this if you are not using a Realtor is not a wise decision.
0 votes
Don Groff, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
No, all parties must agree to any and all changes. Depending on the change you may want to accommodate them if they can still back out of the contract. It depends but to answer your question once a contract is signed by all parties and executed any and all changes MUST be agreed upon by all parties involved.

Hope this helps.

Don Groff | REALTOR® & Mortgage Broker
Austin Real Estate Pros & 360 Lending Group
o 512.669.5599 | m 512.633.4157 |
websites: |
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0 votes
1st Zero-Emi…, , Austin, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
The short answer is "No".

You only have to fulfill what you've currently signed contractually.

During "option period" you might expect some requests for changes if they are in regards to something that was not on your sellers disclosure but are significant to market value of the home.

Additionally, term flexibility might be in your best interest as well, say, if a buyer needs a couple more days here or there for processes.

See, pick your battles and be realistic on pricing or repairs during renogatiations because your next buyer will most likely have similar requests....
The difference in the next buyer is that they will come in with less value perceived than the first buyer. Why?

Well, one buyer walked away already for an unknown reason to the next buyer... and, you must disclose new knowledge of the home.

Collectively, this rarely starts the next buyer at a higher price than the first.

This is a matter of strategic positioning for not only a win-win, but loss-prevention.

If you have a real estate agent, ask that agent to bring in his or her Broker for a third pair of eyes to oversee the situation as a safety to ensure one aspect doesn't go overlooked.

If don't have an agent, call this emergency realtor service and engage immediately:
512 - 663 - 4686
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0 votes
John Crowe, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
Two scenarios may exist: 1) You executed a contract submitted by the buyer, meaning it is a legally binding agreement. If this is the case, the buyer cannot ask for changes unless they have an option period (where most buyers schedule inspections) and are willing to risk losing the property. 2) In the option period the buyer discovered some issues through an inspection and are asking for your help correcting them or adjusting the price to accommodate. Again, you can accept, reject or find a middle ground.

I recommend speaking with your agent to discuss the options available to you.

Good luck!

John Crowe, Broker
Keller Williams
0 votes
Donna Goode, Agent, Austin, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
You are never required to accept changes to the contract. You can decline the changes and risk the buyer terminating the contact or you could consider a counter offer to the changes. Understanding the reasons for the changes is important. As Barbara mentioned below, the lender may request changes to meet lender requirements, sometimes it is a matter of timing for inspections to be completed during an option or inspection period. Most often in the Austin area, contract changes are a result of an inspection on the home that reveals needed repairs that are costly or affect the safety or structure of the property.

Your agent can advise you best on your specific situation. Best of luck on your negotiations.

Donna Goode
RE/MAX Heart of Texas
Austin, TX
0 votes
Barbara Coker, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, San Antonio, TX
Thu May 30, 2013
If both parties have signed the contract, you need to find out why the buyers are requesting anything new. As a lender, I know we often need to ask for changes in order to make the loan work. It's impossible to answer to a specific need here. For example though, more closing costs paid by the seller if the buyer is short of verifiable funds to close. Or maybe the appraisal came in low? The lender might need a longer closing date for final closing?

However, a seller is not required to accept the changes, and the contract might fail at that point. Earnest money often becomes an issue at that time, and your listing agent should be able to tell you what will happen next, according to the terms of the agreed upon contract.

Good luck!
Barbara Coker
Licensed Mortgage Loan Officer
100% Home Loans All Over Texas!
Web Reference:
0 votes
Jim Olive, Agent, Key West, FL
Thu May 30, 2013
Not really enough info to work with here. As with most things, it really depends on the specifics. You DO NOT have to accept the changes, but by not accepting them, you risk losing this buyer. It's all part of the continuing negotiation. It sounds like they came back after an inspection with items they wanted corrected? If you had a bilateral contract with no contingencies left open, then they can't just "come back with more changes", they are bound by the contract too. But if they are working out the kinks of an existing contingency (most typically an inspection contingency), then they have the option to modify the contract or walk. If you don't want them to walk, work with them. Perhaps you can offer to do something short of what they have requested and make them happy. Maybe they're bluffing and would still take the house without any contract mods. All part of the "game" of real estate. If you have a Realtor you should be working with them to devise your strategy. Best of luck...
0 votes
We have negotiated 3 counter offers already.
We signed the contract 'as is' Tuesday and now they want different terms for closing the lease back requiring me to move sooner than expected and they want the least back fee up front prior to closing. The inspection has not occurred yet.
Flag Thu May 30, 2013
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