Goodie: I think you have your answer(s.) While I agree with Ken that two offers may be offensive to one's sense of what is right, I was talking specifically of laws. I still do not know of any law that would be broken. Extending Ken's thinking further, one might say that any offer made that might be retracted for any reason would also be unethical. I don't think so.
The buyer has the right to buy more than one condo, if they can afford them. While a Realtor might have a suspicion that the buyer who made more than one offer was planning to take only one deal, you really can't say. If it is the buyer's position to make offers to see who is more willing to negotiate and they want it kept quiet, who can tell me that it is ethical to insist that they reveal their strategy? It's loosy-goosy ethically and I would advise against multiple offers but for more practical reasons, as I have.
The other issue that has reared its ugly little head is the one-page "offer." The one page "offer" is not an offer. It is not a letter of intent. It is a note that says, if you like the price written here, and we can agree to all the other terms found in a contract, I would likely sign a sales contract. This note is not binding.
The real offer come in the form of a contract that the offerer has already signed that spells out EXACTLY the price, terms and conditions for the sale of a property. In most states, the person receiving this offer, upon signing it and returning it, binds the original signer and him/herself to a sales agreement that will end, as quickly as possible in the transfer of the property. That is the only real offer that can be made and what I imagined Goodie716 was discussing. As far as the "offer" to make an offer, I would say fire away, they are not binding and if you get five acceptances, you may wish to firm up one real offer of a complete contract. One page "offers," in my opinion are just talk and talk is cheap.
In fact, that's a good way to end this little exercise. Talk is cheap. Don't cheapen yourself by too much of it. Sellers are bargaining in good faith, for the most part, and so should you.
As Jennie said and I said as well, sequential offers are a good way to keep things straight. It would be as much to the buyerâ€™s benefit as the sellerâ€™s, if we did not gum up things with more than one offer at a time. Ken says in his eyes it is unethical to make two offers simultaneously and indeed, there may be precedent that says so in the Realtor organization or perhaps the state authority has already agreed that this is so. I donâ€™t know that they have but I too would prefer not to â€œgo thereâ€ with multiple offers.
Iâ€™m surer that it would be unethical for me to get a buyer committed to do things that would cost him/her money in lost deposits and in ill will and which might cost him/her that deal that was truly the best they could get.