Don’t Fear the Florida “As Is” Contract

As a homebuyer, writing an “as is” contract on the home you wish to purchase might sound a little scary. But really, the “as is” contract protects you as a buyer during your initial inspection period. Let me explain…

As you may know, there are two common contracts used in Florida real estate, the FAR/BAR Standard Contract, and the FAR/BAR “As Is” Contract. FAR/BAR is short for the Florida Association of Realtors®/Florida Bar Association, which have worked together to create the two standardized contracts for Florida Realtors® to use. 

Choosing The Right Contract

Which contract you use depends on your particular buying situation and the condition of the home. To be honest, we rarely use the Standard Contract here on island, as we feel the “As Is” contract better protects buyers during their inspection period. 

You see, with the “As Is” contract, buyers have a 15-day inspection period (which can be negotiated to be longer or shorter) in order to have a thorough inspection done on the property. During that timeframe, the buyer can cancel the contract at any time, and receive their full deposit back, if they feel the property is no longer suitable to their needs.

You could say this contracts allows you to have a “free look” at a property, without having to commit to the purchase if you are not satisfied with the amount of repairs needed or find another fault in the property.

In the Standard Contract, a General Repair Limit is usually agreed upon prior to the inspection, which in some cases could leave you, the buyer, with a greater financial burden than expected if a major repair cost is discovered during the home inspection.

Which Contract Is Better?

While both contracts are well written and have their pros and cons.You should speak with your agent about which contract is best for your specific buying or selling situation. In addition, you may choose to hire a real state attorney to help you in reviewing contracts, should you desire additional guidance in this area.

Our job as your real estate agent is to best guide you in a smooth transaction and protect you from any challenges we foresee with a home sale. When the time comes to write an offer, we will go through each page, line by line, so that you are comfortable with the contract before signing anything.

As always, if you have any questions about contracts or the buying process on Sanibel, feel free to call or email me! 239-472-1950 or

Susan McCallion About Susan McCallion

Meet "Your Favorite Redhead." Susan was exposed to real estate while young with her parent's 8 Re/MAX offices in Connecticut! In 2008, Susan and Jim became permanent Sanibel residents, starting McCallion & McCallion to bring a fresh approach to real estate.