Buying a Home in North Carolina

NC Real Estate Contracts

When buying a home in North Carolina you will interact with several different types of NC Real Estate Contracts and Forms. Your agent will go over them in detail, but we believe it’s beneficial to have access them beforehand.

Working with Real Agents Brochure

This will most likely be the first form you encounter when working with a real estate agent. The NC Real Estate Commission requires that agent review this brochure at first substantial contact so that you understand how agency works in North Carolina. Per the Real Estate Commission:

“This brochure addresses the various types of agency relationships that may be available to you. It should help you decide which relationship you want to have with a real estate agent. It will also give you useful information about the various services real estate agents can provide buyers and sellers, and it will help explain how real estate agents are paid.”

It’s important to note that this brochure does not obligate you to any kind of relationship with a real estate agent. This brochure is strictly for informational purposes regarding Buyer’s Agency, Seller’s Agency and Dual Agency in North Carolina. An agent will ask you to initial that you received this brochure for his/her records.

Here is a video form the NC Real Estate Commission on the Working with Real Estate Agents Brochure:

Overview of the Standard Contract Form

This form provides a summary highlighting important aspects of the standard Offer To Purchase Contract. The form discusses the EMD (Earnest Money Deposit), DD Fee (Due Diligence Fee), DD Period (Due Diligence Period), contract formation, closing attorneys, financing and contingency sales.

NC Offer To Purchase Contract

This is the contract you will typically sign to submit an offer on a property. The current version is 14 pages long and it covers a lot of material. The overview above can help with some of the key items.
Many buyers ask; “what does and does not come with the house”. The newest version provides a list on page 3, 2(a) of the offer to purchase. We’ve included the list for easy access.

Note: Two items that come up quite a bit are curtains and bathroom mirrors. Curtain rod and brackets convey but not the curtains themselves unless noted in the contract. All bathroom mirrors convey. This language about bathroom mirrors was added because it used to state the mirrors attached to the wall conveyed. This created confusion because many bathroom mirrors are hung on a nail or screw and are not officially attached to the wall. To clarity, it now states that all bathroom mirrors convey unless noted in the contract.

2.FIXTURES AND EXCLUSIONS.(a)Specified Items: Unless identified in subparagraph (d) below, the following items, including all related equipment and remote control devices, if any, are deemed fixtures and shall convey, included in the Purchase Price free of liens:

  • Alarm and security systems (attached) for security, fire,smoke, carbon monoxide or other toxins with all related access codes, sensors, cameras, dedicated monitors, hard drives, video recorders, power supplies and cables;doorbells/chimes
  • All stoves/ranges/ovens; built-in appliances; attached microwave oven; vent hood
  • Antennas; satellite dishes and receivers
  • Basketball goals and play equipment (permanently attached or in-ground)
  • Ceiling and wall-attached fans; light fixtures (including existing bulbs)
  • Fireplace insert; gas logs or starters; attached fireplace screens; wood or coal stoves
  • Floor coverings (attached)
  • Fuel tank(s) whether attached or buried and including any contents that have not been used, removed or resold to the fuel provider as of Settlement. NOTE: Seller’s use, removal or resale of fuel in any fuel tank is subject to Seller’s obligation under Paragraph 8(c) to provide working,existing utilities through the earlier of Closing or possession by Buyer.
  • Garage door openers with all controls
  • Generators that are permanently wired
  • Invisible fencing with power supply, controls and receivers
  • Landscape and outdoor trees and plants (except in move able containers); raised garden; landscape and foundation lighting; outdoor sound systems; permanent irrigation systems and controls; rain barrels; landscape water features; address markers
  • Mailboxes; mounted package and newspaper receptacles
  • Mirrors attached to walls, ceilings, cabinets or doors; all bathroom wall mirrors
  • Storage shed; utility building
  • Swimming pool (excluding inflatable); spa; hot tub
  • Solar electric and solar water heating systems
  • Sump-pumps, radon fans and crawl space ventilators; de-humidifiers that are permanently wired
  • Surface-mounting brackets for television and speakers;recess-mounted speakers; mounted intercom system
  • Water supply equipment, including filters, conditioning and softener systems; re-circulating pumps; well pumps and tanks
  • Window/Door blinds and shades, curtain and drapery rods and brackets, door and window screens and combination doors, awnings and storm windows

The Offer to Purchase notes two disclosures that a buyer should receive about the property: The Residential Property Disclosure and the Mineral & Oil & Gas Rights Disclosure (MOG). If you do not receive these disclosures before submitting an offer, you will have 3 days to terminate the contract. Your agent will go over all the in’s and out’s including exemptions.

NC Residential Property Disclosure

This disclosure is a list of questions answered by the seller about the property for sale. The seller can answer ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘no representation’.

Mineral & Oil & Gas Rights Disclosure

This disclosure pertains to the severed rights of the mineral, oil or gas rights to the property. The seller can answer ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘no representation’.

Buyer Agency Agreement

When are ready to work with a specific agent you will complete a Buyer Agency agreement that will formally establish that relationship. The contract details how the agent will get paid. In NC, the seller typically pays the real estate commissions for both the buyer and the listing agent. This contract also notes 3 other forms that should be given to the buyer:

Exclusive Right To Sell Listing Agreement

When you are ready to list your property for sale with a real estate agent, you will complete this contract. The contract technically is between the listing agent’s firm and the seller. This contract details how the real estate commission will be paid specically stating how much goes to the listing agent and the buying agent. The contract also notes 2 forms that should be given to the seller.