Letting an option expire

The way I understand it, if you put an option on a property to buy it within 30 days and you can’t find your end buyer, then the option would just expire and the only money you would be out would be whatever amount of earnest money was agreed upon correct?

I’m curious what everyone is talking about when they say to “make sure you have an escape clause written in the contract”. Why would one even be neccessary? To get your earnest money back?

Be polite and notify the seller in writing of you are not going to be able to perform and are letting the option go.