A Brief Look at “Subject Tos”

This one’s dedicated to my Canadian readers, who usually are the ones to give me a list of “subject tos” for any offer they make. What’s a subject to? Things to which the offer is subject, friends. Or as we usually call them here in the States, contingencies.

The Arizona Association of REALTOR’s Residential Purchase Contract has a number of these subject to (from here known as contingencies) already built in. Here are a few:

  • Appraised value
  • Financing
  • Inspections
  • HOA rules and regulations
  • Sellers dislocures
  • Insurance claims histories

I’m likely missing something but I’m pretty sure I’m not. There also are addenda that can be added that will make a purchase contingent upon the sale of another property, though I can’t remember the last time that form actually was used. Probably should be some sort of ceremony for anyone who gets to pull it out of mothballs.

In addition to all the contingencies, the contract discusses what items are considered part of the house (our $5 word for such things are appurtenances.) Ceiling fans, window treatments, built-in appliances, towel rods, the toilet paper holder … these are but a few of the items that are supposed to stay put.

Patio furniture and that southwestern painting of the cat in the cowboy hat? Not so much.

Naturally, you’ll want to read the contract thoroughly to make sure everything you want is there. But more often not, your subject to is boiler plate. And that’s not so bad.

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at allphoenixrealestate.com.