Home Buying Tips: What Does Pending Mean in Real Estate?

By : europeanproperty

Looking for your dream home can be challenging. Not only do you have to find the best price-quality offer, but also deal with many discouraging issues – like a “pending” label near the image of the best house you’ve come across. Don’t give up when you see it! “Pending” doesn’t always mean “sold,” so pretty often you still have a chance.


In this article, we’ll tell you what to do if the house is pending and share a few home buying tips. And if you’re still on the lookout – check out realtors who offer properties in picturesque regions, like the Richard Pattisall website. Remember – don’t ever be afraid to fight for the house of your dreams.

What Does Pending Mean?

It simply means that a buyer submitted the offer, and a seller accepted it. Pending offers are often considered inactive and will remain in this state until all legal work has been processed. This also means that a home seller can’t cancel the sale if a higher offer comes up, so you won’t bump the current buyer by offering more money.


However, there is a possibility that the seller still accepts back-up offers in case the deal falls through. So you do have an opportunity to put an offer on the table – the property is not sold until the deed has been recorded.

Can a Realtor Show a House That’s Pending?

Yes, and most of them do. A house with a pending offer is still technically on the market, so if the seller doesn’t wish otherwise, you can take a look at it. Even if the seller is confident with the offer and doesn’t want any more showings, an experienced realtor, if you have one, can still schedule one for you.

Why Is a House Pending for So Long?

The offer can be pending for more than four months because of snagged negotiations, problems with getting a mortgage, delayed construction, or longer-than-usual processing times. It can also happen because of an agent’s oversight in updating the status. What is best to do in such a situation is to ask your realtor about the details of the pending offer – this way you’ll be up to date with any changes.

Can a Pending Offer Fall Through?

It’s not uncommon. If for a seller it can be problematic to cancel a pending offer, a buyer can do it more easily: for example, because of an unsatisfactory house inspection, failure to get a mortgage or a short-sale failure, emergency, or just simple change of heart.

What to Do if an Offer Is Pending?

First of all, make sure that this is the house you want. If an offer falls through, it can mean that something went wrong during the inspection, and, depending on the seller’s wishes, you may not see the home before making an offer. Explore other options in your area, and only then make a final decision.


Secondly, get on the seller’s radar. Have your agent speak with the listing agent and learn about the current state of the offer. Were there any issues with the contract or disagreements between the seller and the buyer? What inspections have taken place? Is the seller accepting back-up offers?


Thirdly, get a mortgage pre approval. For this, you will need to submit information on your finances and assets, but preapproval will surely make you look better for a seller.


Then, submit a back-up offer. Your real estate agent will help you do this in case a current one falls through. However, consider making an offer without contingencies – it can be risky, but such offers are very attractive for sellers. If something goes wrong, you’ll be the first one the seller will think about. You may also consider offering more money or asking your realtor about any issues with the current sale and eliminating then – this will help you create the strongest offer possible.


After making an offer, stay visible to the seller and maybe even write a personal letter. Regardless of the property status, you never know what’s really happening with the sale. Perhaps the homeowners are not pleased with the negotiations? In this case, you’ll get a better image than any other possible or even current buyers.

Never Give Up

The first thing you need to remember about looking for a house – you can always find your dream home. Even if an offer is already pending, you still have a chance of buying it. What you need is an up-to-date real estate agent who knows how to deal with complicated situations, some effort, and some hope. And if you don’t get it, don’t give up – this only means that your dream home is still somewhere out there.