Reptition, Red River Valley and the Residential Purchase Agreement

Residential Purchase Agreement

Reading the residential purchase agreement can solve many potential problems.

A client whose home in Fair Oaks I sold last year called a few days ago to reiterate how happy she was with my services and her utter amazement that a real estate agent in this day and age would advise a client NOT to take an offer. She is an agent herself. She said: Who does that? Well, I dunno, but I obviously had said it to her, and I would have said it for only one reason — because that was in her best interest. Then I asked why was she trying to butter me up. What was going on?

Much laughter, then she launched into the fact she has a real estate license but hasn’t been using it, and inquired whether it would be worth it to her to join the Board of Realtors, MLS, all the organizations that charge an arm and a leg to belong. We talked for a long time, and I told her the single thing that has immensely helped me and what I suggested she do to get started in real estate after all these years of absence:

Read the California Residential Purchase Agreement and Joint Escrow Instructions in its entirety, all 10 pages, and read it at least 6 times, maybe more. Commit every paragraph to memory.

The agents who seem to struggle the most are those who have never read the RPA. Many just fill in the empty blanks and instruct their buyers to initial here and sign there. Just about all of the answers to anyone’s potential problems in a real estate transaction are contained in the RPA. A Realtor should know that contract inside out and backwards. Of course, we have to be careful not to give legal advice, but it is our duty to embed the terms of the RPA into our brains.

On a related note, let me compare this to learning how to play the guitar. Just about anybody can learn how to play the guitar, although not everybody can play it well. My guitar teacher in 1962 insisted that I could not become proficient unless I could play a song at least 6 times in a row without a mistake. With swollen and callused fingers, I invested more than 1,000 attempts to achieve that goal. As a result, I can play Red River Valley without any mistakes, LOL. But I can’t play Stairway to Heaven. I know my limitations.

If you want to become a top-notch Sacramento Realtor, then study the Residential Purchase Agreement. Agents don’t need to memorize every possible real estate form because there is ample opportunity to peruse ZipForms, but one does absolutely need to know the RPA. There is no proper representation without that knowledge.

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