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Earnest Money Deposit


  • Must be in certified funds or money order made payable to the Buyer’s Select Closing Agent (BSCA) and delivered to the listing broker’s office within 2 days of receiving notification from HUD that the buyer’s bid is accepted – NOT 2 days after receiving the ratified contract.


  • The listing broker will deliver the earnest money deposit to the Buyer’s closing office.


EMD amount:


  1. If property costs less than $49,999 = $500

  2. If property costs $50,000 - $249,999 = $1,000

  3. If property costs more than $250,000 = $2,000

  4. Vacant Lot = 50% of the list price

Earnest Money Disposition


  • Listing Broker can’t determine the disposition of the EMD; only HUD can


  • Click here to read the HUD Earnest Money and Forfeiture Return Policy 


  • EMD disposition is signed at contract signing via DocuSign

Forfeiture of Earnest Money Deposit

Owner Occupants


Owner Occupant Buyers Purchasing Insured (I) or Insurable w/ Escrow (IE)


  • The failure by a buyer to close on the sale of a property within the allowable time period, including any extensions granted by HUD, will result in the forfeiture of the earnest money deposit, except where special circumstances exist AND are documented and accepted by HUD.


  • Special Circumstances by Owner Occupants for earnest money to be refunded:

  1. Death in the immediate family

  2. Recent serious illness in the immediate family … affecting the purchaser’s financial ability to close

  3. Loss of job by primary breadwinner (no fault of purchaser)

  4. Other good cause, as determined and approved by HUD

  5. HUD or DE underwriter determines purchaser is not an acceptable borrower

Owner Occupants Purchasing Uninsured Properties (UI)

  1. If PRE-APPROVED, HUD will return 100% of the EMD if Buyer is unable to obtain mortgage financing despite good efforts.

  2. Pre-Approved means a commitment has been obtained by a recognized mortgage lender for financing in a specific dollar amount sufficient to purchase the property

  3. If Pre-qualified, despite good efforts to obtain mortgage financing it isn’t able to be obtained, 50% is forfeited and 50% refunded.


  • 100% of the EMD is forfeited, regardless of reason; Exception - HUD cancels the sale

  • Can inspect during the inspection period, but it doesn’t give them the right to get the EMD back if canceling during the 15 days​

  • FHA Insured Sales (IN) or (IE) – will forfeit 50% if determined by HUD or Underwriter to be unacceptable buyer. Will forfeit entire EMD for any other reason.

  • Uninsured Sales (UN) – 100% of the EMD is forfeited regardless of reason

"Every home is...

   Someone's perfect pearl."

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