Real estate contracts for the purchase and sale of property can get voluminous and extremely complex. However, the mortgage contingency clause or loan contingency clause, is one of the most important clauses of any real estate contract. An example of such a clause can be found below.
The mortgage contingency clause provides protection to the buyer of real property by conditioning the purchase upon being able to successfully obtain a mortgage for the purchase. With certain exceptions, if the buyer is unable to obtain a mortgage for the purchase, the buyer has the ability to cancel the contract and receive a full refund of the down payment. The clause provides for a fixed period of time with specified terms during which the mortgage must be applied for and pursued in good faith. If the buyer does not cooperate with the mortgage process and the sellers can show proof thereof, the buyer runs the risk of losing the protection of this clause and therefore lose the down payment funds.
Unless the purchase is a cash purchase, a real estate contract should always include a mortgage contingency clause to protect the buyer. However, today’s hot market has sellers opting to not accept any offers to purchase with any type of mortgage contingency clause. This allows sellers to close faster or keep down payment funds if financing falls through.
Additionally, real estate agents can use the mortgage contingency as part of their listing presentation. If the real estate agent is confident enough in the ability to sell a property quickly, the agent may propose to the seller that the agent will sell the property with no contingencies at all.
“Mortgage Commitment Contingency. (Delete paragraph if inapplicable. For explanation, see: NOTES ON MORTGAGE COMMITMENT CONTINGENCY CLAUSE.)
* The obligation of Purchaser to purchase under this contract is conditioned upon issuance, on or before days after a fully executed copy of this contract is given to Purchaser or Purchaser’s attorney in the manner set forth in paragraph 25 or subparagraph 8(j) (the “Commitment Date”), of a written commitment from an Institutional Lender pursuant to which such Institutional Lender agrees to make a first mortgage loan, other than a VA, FHA or other governmentally insured loan, to Purchaser, at Purchaser’s sole cost and expense, of $ for a term of at least years (or such lesser sum or shorter term as Purchaser shall be willing to accept) at the prevailing fixed or adjustable rate of interest and on other customary commitment terms (the “Commitment”). To the extent a Commitment is conditioned on the sale of Purchaser’s current home, payment of any outstanding debt, no material adverse change in Purchaser’s financial condition or any other customary conditions, Purchaser accepts the risk that such conditions may not be met; however, a commitment conditioned on the Institutional Lender’s approval of an appraisal shall not be deemed a “Commitment” hereunder until an appraisal is approved (and if that does not occur before the Commitment Date Purchaser may cancel under subparagraph 8(e) unless the Commitment Date is extended). Purchaser’s obligations hereunder are conditioned only on issuance of a Commitment. Once a Commitment is issued, Purchaser is bound under this contract even if the lender fails or refuses to fund the loan for any reason.
* Purchaser shall (i) make prompt application to one or, at Purchaser’s election, more than one Institutional Lender for such mortgage loan, (ii) furnish accurate and complete information regarding Purchaser and members of Purchaser’s family, as required, (iii) pay all fees, points and charges required in connection with such application and loan, (iv) pursue such application with diligence, and (v) cooperate in good faith with such Institutional Lender(s) to obtain a Commitment.Purchaser shall accept a Commitment meeting the terms set forth in subparagraph 8(a) and shall comply with all requirements of such Commitment (or any other commitment accepted by Purchaser).Purchaser shall furnish Seller with a copy of the Commitment promptly after receipt thereof.
* (Delete this subparagraph if inapplicable) Prompt submission by Purchaser of an application to a mortgage broker registered pursuant to Article 12-D of the New York Banking Law (“Mortgage Broker”) shall constitute full compliance with the terms and conditions set forth in subparagraph 8(b)(i), provided that such Mortgage Broker promptly submits such application to such Institutional Lender(s). Purchaser shall cooperate in good faith with such Mortgage Broker to obtain a Commitment from such Institutional Lender(s).
** If all Institutional Lenders to whom applications were made deny such applications in writing prior to the Commitment Date,Purchaser may cancel this contract by giving Notice thereof to Seller, with a copy of such denials, provided that Purchaser has complied with all its obligations under this paragraph 8.
* If no Commitment is issued by an Institutional Lender on or before the Commitment Date, then, unless Purchaser has accepted a written commitment from an Institutional Lender that does not conform to the terms set forth in subparagraph 8(a), Purchaser may cancel this contract by giving Notice to Seller within 5 business days after the Commitment Date, provided that such Notice includes the name and address of the Institutional Lender(s) to whom application was made and that Purchaser has complied with all its obligations under this paragraph 8.
* If this contract is canceled by Purchaser pursuant to subparagraphs 8(d) or (e), neither party shall thereafter have any further rights against, or obligations or liabilities to, the other by reason of this contract, except that the Downpayment shall be promptly refunded to Purchaser and except as set forth in paragraph 27.
* If Purchaser fails to give timely Notice of cancellation or if Purchaser accepts a written commitment from an Institutional Lender that does not conform to the terms set forth in subparagraph 8(a), then Purchaser shall be deemed to have waived Purchaser’s right to cancel this contract and to receive a refund of the Downpayment by reason of the contingency contained in this paragraph 8.
** If Seller has not received a copy of a commitment from an Institutional Lender accepted by Purchaser by the Commitment Date, Seller may cancel this contract by giving Notice to Purchaser within 5 business days after the Commitment Date, which cancellation shall become effective unless Purchaser delivers a copy of such commitment to Seller within 10 business days after the Commitment Date.After such cancellation neither party shall have any further rights against, or obligations or liabilities to, the other by reason of this contract, except that the Downpayment shall be promptly refunded to Purchaser (provided Purchaser has complied with all its obligations under this paragraph 8) and except as set forth in paragraph 27.
** For purposes of this contract, the term “Institutional Lender” shall mean any bank, savings bank, private banker, trust company, savings and loan association, credit union or similar banking institution whether organized under the laws of this state, the United States or any other state, foreign banking corporation licensed by the Superintendent of Banks of New York or regulated by the Comptroller of the Currency to transact business in New York State; insurance company duly organized or licensed to do business in New York State; mortgage banker licensed pursuant to Article 12-D of the Banking Law; and any instrumentality created by the United States or any state with the power to make mortgage loans.
For purposes of subparagraph 8(a), Purchaser shall be deemed to have been given a fully executed copy of this contract on the third business day following the date of ordinary or regular mailing, postage prepaid.”