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When browsing properties for sale, you may come across phrases like “under offer” or “under contract.” Both terms indicate that a buyer and seller have reached an agreement on the sale of a property, but they are not interchangeable.

“Under offer” is a term used primarily in the United Kingdom and refers to when a seller has accepted an offer from a buyer but the sale has not yet been completed. Essentially, the property is off the market but the sale has not been finalized. During this time, other potential buyers may still inquire about the property, but the seller is not allowed to accept any new offers until the current offer falls through.

“On the other hand, “under contract” is a term used primarily in the United States and means that a buyer and seller have signed a legally binding contract for the sale of a property. This contract outlines the terms and conditions of the sale, such as the purchase price, closing date, and any contingencies or conditions that need to be met. Once both parties have signed the contract, the property is under contract and off the market.

While both “under offer” and “under contract” indicate that a sale is pending, they are not the same thing. “Under offer” is less binding than “under contract” and allows for more flexibility for both the buyer and seller. “Under contract” is a more formal and legally binding agreement, meaning that both parties are committed to following through with the sale.

In conclusion, if you are in the United Kingdom, seeing “under offer” on a property listing means that the property is off the market but the sale has not been finalized. However, if you are in the United States and see “under contract,” it means that the sale is legally binding and the property is no longer available for purchase. No matter which term you encounter, it`s important to understand what it means and to seek advice from a real estate professional if you have any questions or concerns.