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Contingency has several meanings in a real estate transaction. A contingent offer or contract means that a buyer is willing to purchase a property subject to a contingency that must be satisfied before the purchase can be completed. Most often the contingency involves the sale of another home by the buyer. A contingency in a contract may also refer to some condition or term of the contract that must be satisfied or met, such as credit approval for a loan or an appraisal to support the contract price.