June 24, 2024
Purchase agreement cancellation termination of right to buy or sell

Why Should Buyers Know Their Rights?

Buying real estate is a significant investment, and it’s essential for buyers to understand their rights, especially when it comes to canceling a contract. Knowing the buyer’s right to cancel can provide buyers with peace of mind, allowing them to make informed decisions throughout the process.

What is the Buyer’s Right to Cancel?

The buyer’s right to cancel a real estate contract typically stems from specific contingencies outlined in the contract. These contingencies may include financing, home inspection, appraisal, or other factors that could affect the buyer’s ability to proceed with the purchase.

Financing Contingencies

One common contingency that grants buyers the right to cancel is the financing contingency. This contingency allows buyers to cancel the contract if they are unable to secure financing for the purchase. This could be due to factors such as the buyer’s credit score, income verification issues, or the inability to meet the lender’s requirements.

Home Inspection Contingencies

Another important contingency that provides buyers with the right to cancel is the home inspection contingency. After conducting a home inspection, if the buyer discovers significant issues or defects that were not disclosed by the seller, they may have the right to cancel the contract or negotiate repairs or credits.

Appraisal Contingencies

An appraisal contingency allows the buyer to cancel the contract or renegotiate the price if the appraised value of the property comes in below the agreed-upon purchase price. This contingency protects buyers from overpaying for a property and gives them the opportunity to reassess the deal.

Other Contingencies

Buyers may also have the right to cancel a real estate contract based on additional contingencies such as a title search revealing unexpected liens, easements, or other encumbrances on the property, or if the seller fails to meet certain disclosure requirements.

How to Exercise the Buyer’s Right to Cancel

When buyers decide to exercise their right to cancel a real estate contract, it’s crucial to follow the specific procedures outlined in the contract. This usually involves providing written notice to the seller or their agent within the designated timeframe specified in the contract.

Buyers should consult with their real estate agent or attorney to ensure they are following the correct procedures and timelines. Failing to comply with the contract’s cancellation requirements could result in the loss of the buyer’s deposit or other legal consequences.


Understanding the buyer’s right to cancel a real estate contract is essential for buyers to protect their interests and investments. By familiarizing themselves with the contingencies and procedures involved, buyers can navigate the homebuying process confidently and make well-informed decisions.