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What Does Pending Mean in Real Estate?

While perusing Zillow or Realtor.com, you will often see properties with a “pending” status. What does pending mean in real estate?

In real estate, a pending status means that the property owner has received and accepted an offer and is under contract to sell it with a buyer.

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It has not already sold, but the owners have negotiated with someone and intend to sell their home to them. Pending properties can still fall out of contract, so don’t give up hope. If the buyer walks away from the contract, you can still submit your own offer.

Can You Still Tour Pending Properties?

Yes! Since a pending property is under contract and has not closed, many homeowners will still let you tour the home. Many sellers are happy to have as many people as possible tour their home if there is a chance that their current contract could fall out.

Allowing as many people as possible to tour your pending property increases the odds of getting it sold, even if the current buyer walks away.

Photo by Ethan Walsweer on Unsplash

Can I Submit an Offer on a House That is Pending?

It depends! In Texas, a Backup Offer can be submitted on properties that are already pending/under contract.

A backup offer allows agents and homeowners to have another option on the table. They can review backup offers in case their current contract falls through.

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In Texas, the Sellers are not able to terminate their current contract solely for the purpose of accepting backup offers. However, agents can present backup offers to their Seller clients so they are aware of their options should issues arise that could terminate their current contract.

Is a Pending Property Contingent?

No, it is not! A pending property is under contract to close. A contingent property is slightly different, and is under contract to close upon sale of the buyer’s property.

A pending property is much more likely to close than a contingency, as there are no blatant contingencies that could terminate the contract if not met.

What is a Contingent Property?

A contingent property, or contingency, is under contract to sell based on the satisfaction of one or more other requirements. Typically, they are contingent on the sale of the buyer’s home before closing can occur.

How Likely is It that a Pending Property Will Go Back on the Market?

Although not incredibly common, a small percentage of pending homes will fall out of contract and go back on market. The number varies widely according to online sources, but every market will have different statistics.

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Generally speaking, once a property is pending it is likely going to close. Sellers and Buyers in the transaction both have an interest in getting it sold. The Sellers want to get their money, and the Buyers want a home, and have often already put up money for inspections and option money.

How Long Will My Home Show Up as Pending?

The length of time a property is listed as pending depends on the market. I always suggest speaking with experienced agents in the area and checking MLS data for average time under contract.

In most markets, the property will show up as “pending” the same day it goes under contract. It will then change to an “off market” status 30 to 45 days later once it has closed.

Courtesy of The Agent’s Archive

In Conclusion

To wrap things up, the pending status in real estate means a house is under contract to sell. While pending, the home can still be toured by other agents and their clients. Buyers can also submit backup offers on a property while it is pending.

Although pending is not the same as contingent, it is important to know about. In future articles, we will dive deep into contingencies and everything that they entail.

Once a property is pending, it is most likely going to close. This is because both buyer and seller have a vested interest in seeing the property sell. Once the property is pending, it will show up as pending until it closes and funds.

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Matt Moreland
Matt Morelandhttps://www.mattmorelandrealtor.com/
Matt is a real estate agent, investor, and entrepreneur in Texas, where he lives with his wife and three children. When he is not working on The Agent's Archive, he is helping his clients acquire investment properties, guiding new agents as they enter the industry, farming wine grapes, or working on something for his winery. In his free time he enjoys homesteading with his family, hunting, swimming, and backpacking.