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  • Writer's pictureSusan Booth

What you need to know about signing a contract

Contract signing means that the parties signing the document agree to the terms in it and their contractual duties and obligations


What it Means to Sign a Contract

There are important things to know when signing a contract. When you add your signature to the dotted line, you agree to the terms and to uphold your end of the bargain. Utah Real Estate transactions require Contracts - from the initial Agent/Client Agreement to the signing of the Property Deed. There could be 3-6 additional (or more) during the transaction negotiation process! Make sure you have a professional to guide you through them.

Not all contracts require a signature.

In some instances, a verbal contract can be legally binding. However, if you want to protect your rights as much as possible, remember specifics, and avoid disagreements, it's a good idea to put it in writing.

If you make an agreement that contains all the elements of a contract — such as an offer, intention, consideration, and acceptance — and both parties are competent to do so, you typically don't need a written contract for sums under $500.

When a contract involves an amount higher than $500 in exchange for goods, it has to be in writing.

Your informal writing — for example, a memo scribbled on a napkin which includes all required elements, plus signatures — may satisfy the statute of frauds. These types of signatures do not meet the requirements for real estate forms, however.

What Does Your Signature Mean?

When you sign a contract, you're saying several things:

You've read the contract and you agree to the contract's terms and conditions. You intend to enter into the contract. You're legally authorized and mentally competent to sign it.

It's important to make sure that all blank lines are filled in and that you fully comprehend the terms. Make sure the other party signs and be sure to get copies of the full agreement containing all all signatures. Most Real Estate Contracts are done online.

When Not To Sign

There are some instances when you shouldn't sign a contract:

* It has unfilled blanks, either a dollar amount, an item, or a date,

* You are under duress or feel threatened to sign it.

* You don't understand something in it and wish to review it with your lawyer.

Your Real Estate Agent isn't a Lawyer. Always feel comfortable with the terms and conditions. Get clarification if you have any doubts!

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