Earnest money

4 Replies

How much should I pay for an Earnest Money Deposit? I have been told by many people that they don't pay anything or maybe up to $100. I have been told by a number of others that the absolute most they pay is $1000. The REA that is presenting the offer I am trying to put in is asking for $2000 in 4 days... I don't necessarily have a problem with paying that much other than I have never heard of anyone I know of in the business paying that much

@Scott Gardner who does the agent work for? If he works for you, then you determine your deposit amount. If he works for the seller, he will make a suggestion but if he wants to sell the property he needs to make the investment work for both sides. You should consider the value of the property as it relates to the value of the deposit. $1,000 is pretty standard. $2,000 could be considered excessive if you are purchasing a $60K property but might be standard if the property is $300K.

That makes sense... My last deal was under contract for $465k and my earnest was for $1000 and this one is more than $100k lower but the agent (yes she is working for me) just sent me the paperwork to sign at $2000 EMD and it kind of threw me off

Hi Scott,

I have a really good relationship with my agent and I pick her brain on every house I buy.  My first question is always what do you think is the least amount of earnest money I can put down.  Cause this is real estate and you don't always no everything I like to always shrink down my risk.  For me some other factors that can influence my amount is how much I want the house and how much it costs.

@Scott Gardner

Of course you need an agent to work for you and only you! That being said, the agent has to fight for what you want, and I would write a check for what you want to put down on the EMD; however, once you put an amount on the RPA the other party may ask for more. This is where your agent steps in and fights for what you feel comfortable with.

I do not put down anymore than $3,500. That is just me and my comfort level. I have had parties come back and ask for more since some people get cold feet and do not mind losing $300 on an EMD if they do not want to proceed 25 days into escrow, but they will mind losing $2,000.

It's up to you, but your agent should be very aware of your comfort in this situation.