Margaret Rome's Blog


Counting The Days


So you think you know how to count?

Watch those dates!


Time is of the essence is at the very top of our contract.

Time of the Essense

     Dates are important. Real important. 

The offer date, the ratified date, and the settlement date are written into our contracts. Many of the dates are counted from the date of the contract. But not all.

There are so many days for financing, so many days for the loan application, so many days for loan commitment, so many days to order the appraisal, and so many days to respond if the value is not reached.

Home Owner Associations and Condos have even more dates and so many days to review and also withdraw.


  Days from contract to perform the inspection. Days to respond if not satisfied by the buyer. Days to respond from the seller. Then more days for responses between the buyer and seller. Some inspections like radon might add additional days to get the results.

Well, septic, lead-based paint, mold, HVAC, roof, chimney, environmental have dates...  and there so many days for a walk through prior to settlement.


one two three


But how are those dates counted? Easy 1-2 3... but not exactly.


If the offer is accepted, signed and agreed upon today, then today's date is written into the contract. This important date is known as ratification.

Today is March 24th. When is day one?

According to the contract, today is day zero and tomorrow is day one.

Get it!

So yes you do count 1-2-3... pretty easy BUT you have to know when to start that counting.


Have a question about contract dates?

Have a question about buying or selling a home...


Call Margaret Rome


Margaret Rome 







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Good points, Margaret.  Dates ARE important. Real important. There are lots of date deadlines in a real estate transaction and knowing how to count them matters. 

Posted by Carol Williams, Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager (Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals.) about 1 year ago

Hi Margaret, every contract is different and needs to be read thoroughly. In my area of California purchase contracts are most often written on the California Association of Realtors form, or the Peninsula Regional Data Service form. San Francisco has its own form.

Days are counted differently depending on which form is used. Contingencies are removed differently.

To help everyone stay on track, I often create a calendar listing specific dates when something is due. It helps -- as does READING the contract!

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) about 1 year ago

Well said Margaret! We have a due diligence period in NC! That is our most important date. Up until that date a buyer can walk away no questions asked, without losing their escrow money. Inspections, appraisals, and loan approval must be done by that date 

Posted by Tom Bailey (Margaret Rudd & Associates Inc.) about 1 year ago

Days can easily slip slide away if not carefully tracked...and that in these times can cost a buyer a house.

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) about 1 year ago

Good morning Margaret.Knowing how to count the days is a critical component of meeting the contract's requirements. Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) about 1 year ago

Ah yes, the counting of the days.  Very important because time actually is of the essence with real estate contracts.

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) about 1 year ago

CONGRATULATIONS Margaret, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Club group!  

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) about 1 year ago

Hello Margaret- - -each day is not created equal - know your contract and the definitions. 

Posted by Michael Jacobs, Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393 about 1 year ago

Hi Margaret - that's why hiring an experienced agent who knows the correct time lines in their contrats and follows them to a T is so so important. I recently had an agent miss an inspection period by 2 days and my guess is he paid for the repairs. Our contract states clearly that buyer must respond within 10 days to sellers repsonse to buyer requests (or another time frame written in if desired) and if they don't respond the sellers response  within that time frame that means they are fine with moving towards closing with no repairs. It's even worse if they buyers were thinking of cancelling the contract - which is the other option they have - and they missed the deadline.

Posted by Anna Banana Kruchten Broker, CRB, CRS, 602-380-4886 (HomeSmart International) about 1 year ago

Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland - Knowing how to read the contract, understand its every word, and how to explain it is why buyers and sellers hire a real estate agent. Hiring the right one, like yourself is the first priority!

Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) about 1 year ago

Thanks for all the good comments and I love hearing from members from all over. Make sure you know your own contracts...there really differences in various states and even in the same states in different counties. 

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) about 1 year ago