What exactly does "under contract contingent" mean in real estate?

Question by Emily Dew: What exactly does "under contract contingent" mean in real estate?
When a house for sale is listed as "under contract" and it says "contingency" next to it, what exactly does that mean? I think it means the sale depends on the potential buyer selling their property first. Is that right? Can a potential buyer who also has sold their home on "contingency" buy another home on "contingency?" I live in Illinois, BTW. Thanks!

Wouldn't advertising that your house is under contract when it's a contingent offer scare off other potential buyers?
Do you have to put any money down when you "buy" a property on contingency?

Best answer:

Answer by 1 Hr Bookkeeper
You hit it square on the head. Buying a house "contingent" on anything means that the contract can be held up due to the possibility of something happening or not happening. If you were to put in an offer "contingent" on selling your house, then you are telling the seller that you will not officially close the house until your house is sold. In the same vein, the seller can say that the sale to you (the buyer) will not close until they close on a house they will move into. It basically slows everything down.

FYI, in a fast market, where houses sell really fast, many sellers will not even look at your offer if it is contingent on something. But, since this is a buyer's market, you could make an offer contingent on some factor and be the only one making the offer. You have the advantage right now as the buyer.

Hope this helps.

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