Wayne brings up an important point in his response - a good agent is able to discern motivation in a transaction. This is really important because what this implies is that the situation is not simply black and white.
In a black and white situation something as fundamental as price will rule the day. In fact and reality there are any number of what a good agent will refer to as value points. There's timing, there's certitude of funding, there's the overall nature of the offer, and some times it even comes down to the seller preferring or liking one buyer better than another. In other words, in a real estate transaction it is not all things being equal.
It is conceivable that your agent did you a disservice by not asking the right questions to enable you to make the strongest possible offer. It is also possible that the offer you made was the best offer you could make and there was no manner in which you could have prevailed.
Back to your original question - a cash offer is not always the winning offer. Where it does win, though, is when the seller find the specificity and certainty very desirable. For a seller few things are worse than a deal going sour. Deals go sour more often these days than in the past because a prospective buyer's financing falls apart.
Anyway, sorry for your inability to negotiate the purchase of the property you desired. Good luck with future endeavors and finding an agent who is able to do your bidding professionally and responsibly.
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I agree with Jeff concerning the cemetary, also the strongest offer is the one with the cash--meaning a bid with a valid approval from your funding source is vital--not a pre-qual that has no teeth behind it but a commitment from a lender who is prepared to finance your purchase--
also put a time frame on the offer--like 5 business days--treat this like you have plenty of other housing options, which you do with all the distressed properties and the bank will tkae your bid seriously--the snow is ready to fly and vacant properties are killers to banks--
jim hough... more