A conveyance of
real estate is a transfer from one person to another.
A real estate contract is one form of conveyance.
A real estate contract is an agreement to transfer title to
real estate to a person, at some specified time in the future,
contingent upon that person’s payment of the purchase price.
The seller is known as a “vendor” and the buyer is
known as a “vendee.” The
vendor gives a deed to the vendee once the vendee has performed
his/her obligations under the contract.
Until such time, the vendor retains title to the real
estate. It is
distinguished from a deed in that a deed actually transfers title
to the buyer, whereas, the real estate contract contemplates
execution of a deed in the future. A real estate contract is distinguishable from a purchase
agreement in that, whereas, a purchase agreement contemplates a
sale of real estate in the future, the real estate contract is the
In most states, a
real estate contract must be in writing and must be signed to be
possible exception is where the buyer has made substantial payment
on the purchase price pursuant to an oral agreement and it would
be unfair to strictly enforce the writing requirement.
A real estate contract must be recorded to put third
persons, such as creditors and subsequent purchasers on notice as
to the contract. At the very minimum, the real estate contract should include
the names and addresses of the vendor and vendee, the legal
description and street address of the real estate, the contract
terms regarding the purchase price and how it is to be paid, and
the type of deed to be given to the vendee upon payment of the
A real estate
contract is sometimes viewed as an alternative form of financing
of a real estate purchase. Instead
of a bank or other lender advancing the purchase price and
receiving a mortgage, the vendor, in effect, finances the purchase
price, retaining title to the real estate as security. In the event of the vendee’s default in performance of the
contract terms, the vendor may foreclose the mortgage or, in
certain circumstances, declare a forfeiture of the contract.
Law Dictionary, Fifth Edition.
14-15-403-04; 26-60-107; 21-6-306.
onward, 689.01 onward.
onward; 44-2-1 through 3.
Hawaii Code §656-1.
real estate contract must have attached to it a certificate of
compliance or express written warranty that the owner has not
received notice of dwelling code violations within the past ten
(10) years or, if such notices were received, a detailed list of
the violations. Illinois
32-1-2-11, 12, 18; 6-1.1-5.5-3.
Maine T.33, §51-53,
201-203, 751; T.11,
real estate contract should include an affidavit stating the
amount of consideration paid, including the amount of any
mortgage assumed by the vendee. Maryland Real Prop. Art. §3-101
through 104, 601; 5-104.
C. 259, §1;
||In Michigan, a real estate contract must
be witnessed by two (2) individuals. Michigan CLA §566.106,
110, .132, 565.1 onward.
through 1303; 28-2-903.
Nebraska Code §76-118,
Hampshire C. 506, §1-2;
C. 477, §3-a,7.
Jersey Code §25-1-2;
Mexico Code §14-9-3;
55-9-403(7); Common Law.
York G.O.L. §5-703;
Carolina Code §22-2;
Dakota Code §9-06-04;
Ohio Code §1335.05;
317.08, .111; 5301.25; 5313.02.
.410, .480, .640.
Island Code §9-1-4; 34-11-1.
Carolina Code §27-23-60; 27-7-20 through 30; 30-7-10.
Dakota Code §53-8-2; 43-28-17.
Code §29-2-101; 66-26-102.
Prop. Code §5.021,
13.001; Bus. & Comm. Code §26.01.
Utah Code §25-5-1;
Virginia Code §36-1-3;
55-1-1; 40-1-8 onward.
The real estate
contract should include an affidavit stating the amount of
consideration paid including the amount of any mortgage assumed
by the vendee. Wyoming
is not a substitute for legal advice. An attorney must be
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