The last time I bought a house, I was given 10 days to meet the conditions, but this time I was told it was only five days. Is this something we can negotiate?

As a buyer, conditions are there to protect you. Buying a home is a major decision, so it’s a smart idea to include conditions that are important to you when you submit your offer.

The number of days that you, as a buyer, can take to meet or waive your conditions is not standardized. In fact, it’s something that you write into your offer to the seller. However, it’s possible that the seller will want to negotiate the number of days that the offer is conditional.

It’s important to be realistic about the number of days it will take you to waive or meet the conditions involved. For example, have you already been working with a lender on your financing or will you be exploring your financing options for the first time? If a home inspection is one of your conditions, how much notice will your chosen home inspector need before being able to complete the inspection? Are you buying a rural property with additional complexities such as a well, septic system or wood-burning appliances that may need specialized inspections?

While including the conditions that are important to you in the offer is a smart idea, it’s equally smart to give yourself enough time to properly address the conditions and ensure you have all the information you need to make a decision.

Joseph Richer is Registrar of the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO). He is in charge of the administration and enforcement of all rules that govern real estate professionals in Ontario. You can find more tips at reco.on.ca, follow on Twitter @RECOhelps or on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/RECOhelps.

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