@DPW , you are very welcome.
I agree with Greg's (@Greg) statement:
- "To be earnest shows a serious intent."
As per the definition of Earnest:
- "resulting from or showing sincere and intense conviction."
As a Seller you want the Potential Buyer to sincerely be pursuing your property. You do not want the Potential Buyer out there with multiple Offers. You want them solely focused on your deal.
Thus, as a Seller you want the "Highest Amount" of Earnest Money.
If a Potential Buyer goes through all the Contingency Deadlines and then later decides to pull the deal, that is when the Seller gets to keep the Earnest Money.
Earnest Money is a sort of "compensation" to the Seller for keeping their property tied up with a Potential Buyer.
Most Potential Buyers will not look at a property once it is Ratified with a Contract (unless it is a smoking hot deal).
However, you want to do what is in your best interest.
Thus, as a Potential Buyer you want to put the "Lowest Amount" of Earnest Money on the table with lots and lots of Contingencies.
A Real Estate Agreement between a Seller and Buyer is basically a "compromise on both sides".
Thus, it is extremely important to know your limits before negotiating a Real Estate Agreement.
Once you reach your limits in a Real Estate Agreement be willing to walk away as there will be another deal around the corner.
We wish you the very best!