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How to Draft a Contract of Sale: A Step-by-Step Guide

Author : Shashwat Srivastava

Updated On : July 27, 2023


Reader's Digest: Are you in the process of buying or selling something? Then you definitely need to know how to draft a contract of sale. It's a crucial document that protects both parties and ensures a smooth transaction. In this article, we'll guide you through the essential steps of creating a solid contract that covers all the necessary details.

An agreement for sale is a crucial legal document that establishes the mutual promises made by the seller and purchaser.

It serves as evidence of the sale and purchase of goods or immovable property, recording the terms of the transfer and payment.

Drafting a contract of sale requires careful attention to detail to ensure the rights and obligations of both parties are clearly stated.

This article provides a step-by-step guide on drafting a contract of sale in India, covering essential aspects and legal considerations.

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Importance of an Agreement for Sale

  1. Clarity and Avoidance of Legal Trouble:
  • An agreement for sale clearly lays out the terms and conditions of the sale, leaving no room for misunderstandings or confusion.
  • By clearly defining the rights and obligations of both the seller and the buyer, it minimizes the risk of future legal disputes.
  • Having a well-drafted agreement in place helps ensure a smooth transaction and avoids unnecessary complications.
  1. Written Evidence:
  • The agreement for sale serves as written proof of the transaction between the seller and the buyer.
  • It provides a record of the agreed-upon terms, such as the purchase price, delivery method, and payment terms.
  • This written evidence is crucial in case any disputes or disagreements arise in the future, as it can be used as a reference to resolve conflicts.
  1. Enforceability:
  • An agreement for sale holds legal weight and is enforceable in a court of law.
  • If one party fails to fulfill their obligations as stated in the agreement, the other party can seek legal remedies.
  • By having a legally binding document, both the seller and the buyer have the assurance that their rights and interests are protected and can be upheld by the legal system if necessary.

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Key Elements to Include in an Agreement for Sale

1. Parties' Details:

  •    Include the full names, residential addresses, and ages of both the seller and the buyer in the agreement for sale.
  •    This information ensures clarity and helps identify the parties involved in the transaction.

2. Description of Goods/Property:

  •   Provide a detailed description of the goods or property being sold.
  •    Include specific information such as size, condition, features, and any unique characteristics of the item or property.
  •    The description should be clear and accurate to avoid misunderstandings.

3. Delivery Method and Timeline:

  •   Clearly specify the method and timeline for delivering the goods or transferring the property.
  •   Include details such as shipping arrangements, transportation responsibilities, or any specific conditions for the delivery process.
  •   The timeline should state the date or timeframe within which the delivery or transfer should occur.

Learn: Draft a Contract of Sale

4. Payment Terms:

  •    Outline the payment terms in the agreement.
  •    Specify the mode of payment, such as cash, check, bank transfer, or any other agreed-upon method.
  •    Clearly state the total amount to be paid for the goods or property.
  •    Include the duration within which the payment must be completed, whether it's a lump sum or in installments.

5. Indemnity Clause:

  •    Include an indemnity clause in the agreement.
  •    This clause seeks compensation from the seller in case of future losses, damages, or expenses incurred by the buyer due to any faults or issues with the goods or property.
  •    It helps protect the buyer's interests and ensures they can seek reimbursement for any unforeseen problems.

6. Penalty Clause:

  •    Specify the details of penalties or consequences if either party defaults on their duties as per the agreement.
  •    Penalties may include financial penalties, termination of the agreement, or other agreed-upon consequences.
  •    This clause encourages both parties to fulfill their obligations and discourages any breach of the agreement.

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7. Right to Terminate:

  •    Include a clause that states the right to terminate the agreement.
  •    Specify the conditions under which either party can cancel or terminate the deal.
  •    This clause provides flexibility and protection in case unforeseen circumstances arise or if either party needs to end the agreement.

8. General Clauses:

  •    Include general clauses in the agreement to cover important aspects.
  •    Address the termination of the agreement, applicable laws governing the transaction, and any dispute resolution mechanisms such as an arbitration clause.
  •    Include the date of signing to establish the official start of the agreement and ensure both parties are aware of when it comes into effect.

Format for Agreement for Sale:

[Include the format of the agreement for sale provided in the reference section]

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Documents Required for Agreement for Sale:

1. ID Proofs:

  •    Scrutinize the ID proofs of both parties involved in the sale.
  •    This helps confirm their names and addresses.
  •    Examples of ID proofs include passports, driver's licenses, or Aadhaar cards in India.
  •    Ensure that the ID proofs are valid and up to date.

2. Proof of Ownership:

  •    Examine documents that provide evidence of clear ownership of the property or goods being sold.
  •    This helps ensure that the seller has the legal right to sell the property/goods.
  •    Examples of proof of ownership include property title deeds, registration documents, or purchase receipts.
  •    Verify the authenticity and validity of these ownership documents.

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Procedure for Agreement for Sale

1. Drafting the Agreement:

  •    Get a lawyer involved: Hire a lawyer who specializes in legal documentation to help you draft the agreement.
  •    Comprehensive coverage: Make sure the agreement covers all the necessary aspects and includes all the important terms and conditions.

2. Review and Revisions:

  •    Thorough review: Carefully go through the drafted agreement to ensure its accuracy and completeness.
  •    Make changes if needed: If you find any errors, omissions, or areas that require modification, make the necessary revisions to improve the agreement.

3. Signing the Agreement:

  •    Stamp paper requirement: Determine whether your state requires the agreement to be printed on judicial stamp paper or e-stamp paper. Follow the prescribed format accordingly.
  •    Witnesses: Arrange for witnesses to be present during the signing of the agreement.
  •    Signing parties: Both the seller and the buyer should sign the agreement to make it legally binding.

4. Preservation:

  •    Signed copies: Make sure each party involved in the agreement has a signed copy for their records.
  •    Safekeeping: Keep the agreement in a safe place where it can be easily accessed if needed in the future.

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Legal Considerations for Agreement for Sale

Judicial or E-Stamp Paper:

When drafting a contract of sale in India, it's important to print the agreement on the appropriate stamp paper value, as required by the state. This ensures the document's legality and validity.

  • Each state in India has its own regulations regarding stamp paper values for legal documents like agreements for sale.
  • Consult the local laws or seek legal advice to determine the correct stamp paper value for your agreement.


It's crucial to understand that the agreement can be modified or amended later on, based on the terms agreed upon by both parties.

  • Sometimes, during the negotiation process or due to changing circumstances, the parties may need to make changes to the agreement.
  • The agreement should include a clause specifying the process and conditions for modification or amendment.
  • Both parties should agree to any modifications in writing and sign the revised agreement to ensure its enforceability.

How a Lawyer Can Help in Drafting an Agreement for Sale

  • When it comes to drafting a contract of sale, it's important to hire a lawyer who specializes in documentation.
  • A lawyer plays a crucial role in creating an effective agreement for sale.
  • They have the legal knowledge and expertise necessary to draft a contract that accurately reflects the intentions of the parties involved.
  • A lawyer provides guidance throughout the process, ensuring that all necessary elements are included in the agreement.
  • They also protect the interests of both parties involved in the sale.
  • By hiring a lawyer, you can have peace of mind knowing that your rights and obligations are properly addressed in the contract.
  • The lawyer will ensure that the agreement complies with the relevant laws and regulations.
  • They can also help identify any potential legal issues or loopholes that need to be addressed.
  • With their experience, a lawyer can anticipate and address any potential disputes that may arise in the future.
  • Overall, having a lawyer's assistance in drafting a contract of sale is essential for ensuring a smooth and legally sound transaction.

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Understanding how to draft a contract of sale is crucial for individuals involved in buying or selling goods or property in India.

By following these guidelines and seeking legal assistance when necessary, individuals can ensure that their rights and obligations are clearly stated and protected.

Remember, a well-drafted agreement for sale serves as a vital document, providing evidence of the transaction and minimizing the risk of legal disputes. 

Whether you're a buyer or a seller, take the time to familiarize yourself with the process and create a solid contract that safeguards your interests.

How to draft a contract of sale is a valuable skill that can contribute to successful and hassle-free transactions..

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a contract of sale?

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