Option Pending and Pending: What is the Difference?

May 19, 2022

Real Estate

Option Pending and Pending: What is the Difference?
Pending Continue To Show (PS), Pending (P), Option Pending (OP), Sold (S) – these are only some of the real estate status codes that exist. It’s understandable if you find these codes intimidating or confusing. This article will delve deeper into option pending and pending statuses. 
Perhaps you’ve come across a pending listing status in your search for a country home or a property in the city. It might not be worth going further as the seller is nearing closing on their sale of the house. 
Option pending means the property is undergoing the option period. Still not quite clear? Read more about option pending vs. pending below.

What Does Option Pending Mean in Real Estate?

Option pending is also known as under contract option pending. If you see this status, the seller has accepted an offer on their property and won’t be staging, showing, and accepting new offers to give way for the buyer to conduct inspections. In other words, under contract option pending means the seller accepted an offer or contract with an option period. 
Also, when a home is under contract option pending, the buyer can terminate the contract without restrictions and forfeit their earnest money deposit.
In Texas real estate, the option period when buying a home is called the termination option

How Long is the Option Period in Texas?

The exact number of days is something that the seller and the buyer will have to negotiate and explicitly define in the contract. Your contract’s option period clause won’t come for free, and the buyer has to pay an option fee to include it in the agreement. 
When a property is under contract option pending or within the option period, the seller cannot accept viewings and offers for up to 20 days. The average length of an option period is ten days. 
As discussed above, the option period is a time for home inspections and buyers to get their earnest money deposit back safely.

What Does Pending Mean in Real Estate?

A house that is pending has passed the inspections initiated by the buyer and is one step closer to closing. Behind the scenes, they may have negotiated the repairs and how to go about refunding the option money. Most of the time, the option fee will be deducted from the final sale price if the seller is moving forward with the contract with the buyer.
But the saying it’s not over until it’s over also applies to the home buying process. Homes that move into pending status can continue to show if the buyer seems like they’re having difficulty putting together their financing. Many times, a call to the Realtor® of the home can reveal whether showings or back-up offers are being accepted on the house. 

Pending With Showings

Also referred to as under contract continue to show, pending with showings statuses occur when the seller decides to accept backup offers just in case the original deal falls through. The home will continue to show through the listing agent.
Sometimes, there are no concerns with the buyer. It’s only the prerogative of the seller to have pending with showings status. They are still moving forward with the current buyer in good faith. 

Can You Still Buy a Home if It is Pending?

Yes. A word of caution, however. The seller can still decline a viewing or an incoming offer in a Pending with Showings (PS) status. A PS status can only mean a little flexibility compared to having a Pending (P) status.
Realtors® have even reported that they tend not to show properties with a PS status anymore unless the listing agent or buyer’s agent explicitly expresses that the seller accepts backup offers.

Can a Pending Home Sale Fall Through?

Absolutely. First-time buyers who have moved on to the pending status can get cold feet and back out of such an important purchase. A mortgage lender can deny the buyer’s home loan at the last minute when the property’s appraised value does not match their application.
Lastly, a deal-breaker may come up during repairs, or an issue affects the final sale price.

What is the Difference Between Option Pending and Pending?

“Option Pending” (OP) means the listing is now under contract and going through inspections. Potential buyers and their real estate agents may still watch the listing in case the current buyer elects to back out during this period.
When prospective buyers only see the term “Pending” (P), it might be time to look at other listings as the seller and current buyer are getting ready to close on the sale. If you’re in love with the house, you might give a call to the listing agent to be sure, but in most cases, sellers cannot hold showings and accept offers on both option pending and pending statuses.
However, all hope is not lost when buyers see a Pending Continue to Show (PS) code. This status means the seller still accepts showings and offers while being in good faith or honoring the original contract with the current buyer.

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