Home Buying in Burke>Question Details

Lwith, Other/Just Looking in 23322

how long after you make an offer on a home does the seller have to accept or decline?

Asked by Lwith, 23322 Mon Jun 14, 2010

We put an offer in on a house, another offer is being made tonight. Don't think our's will be the best, so that's fine. But I am wondering, what if the seller doesn't decide to decline any offers to get more competition. How long can they hold our offer before the must state yes or no?

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Unfortunately, there are no set standards as to how quick a seller needs to respond to an offer--your agent can advise best based on this particular situation--and you can ask your agent to keep checking to see if any decisions have been made or when is the decision expected..
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
In our market right now, Sellers are sometimes receiving multiple offers within the first few days after listing. While we are taking a slower approach to accepting and/or countering offers, I think communication between agents serves both the Buyer and the Seller best. As a Buyers agent, staying in touch with the Seller's agent benefits my client and relieves some of the stress they may be feeling. I also let the Buyer know that they may have to be a little more patient if they really want the house... Sellers are evaluating not only the price but other factors that may make one offer more attractive than the others. I am in agreement with not using an expiration date on an offer because it is simple to withdraw your offer at anytime prior to acceptance.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 18, 2012
Unless you put an expiration on the contract, there is no deadline that a seller must meet. However if they take too long and you wish to look elsewhere for a home, you may withdraw your offer as long as your contract has not been ratified by the other party(s).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 25, 2010
This has become a frustrating problem in some parts of our area recently. Sometimes a listing agent will advise their client to "collect" offers for several days in order to have more options to choose from. Unfortunately, this often leads to an overwhelmed seller who cannot easily pick a winner from multiple offers with widely varying terms.

I rarely use a deadline in a buyer's offer because it is a simple process to withdraw an offer. As a Buyers' Agent, though, I will follow up with the lister to understand the cause for the delay and to urge a quicker response. Sometimes the personal touch, and some information about my client's eagerness to move on, will be enough to prompt the seller into responding.

All of this is irrelevant in the cases of foreclosures or short sales, I'm afraid. Banks work only on their own timetables and will respond whenever they please. Of course, even here you have the option of withdrawing your offer at any time.
Web Reference: http://www.JaniceCairns.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 21, 2010
This is more an etiquette question than a hard and fast rule. Most real estate contracts contain a "time is of the essence" clause. And as the buyer you likely have right to rescind your offer at any time prior to acceptance. So, it is not in the seller's best interest to sit on it. If I submitted an offer on behalf of a client I would expect an answer within 24 hours or an explanation on a delayed timeline (out of town seller, work schedule etc.). If you haven't heard anything within 48 hours you've probably got your answer and it's a "no thank you". On a side note why would you be "fine" with not getting the house? Did you make an offer on a property you aren't sure of?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 15, 2010
Your buyers agent person who needs to provide all the answers to your questions.

Who is the seller? Bank? Foreclosure? Short Sale? or private owner?

Is there a bid date deadline?

Did you place dead line date in your sales offer?

Web Reference: http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
I agree in part with my colleagues though I never put an expiration date on my offers. My belief is that if there were such a clause used regularly..the board of Realtors and the Contracts committee would have adopted the language as part of the contract. Furthermore you can withdraw your offer any time prior to receiving written acceptance.

Typically, if you get a slow response it's because the seller has not been properly schooled prior to receiving the offer. They should know most details and be able to give you a quick response. OR they are liking yours, afraid to lose it, but hoping for another. Then you simply tell the agent you are pulling it if they are not acting timely. You can always come back as well. There are many ways you can sweeten a deal other than price.

Good luck!

Kind Regards,

Erik J. Weisskopf, ABR,CDPE,CRS,GRI
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
I agree with all of the answers to your question, as a buyer agent I insert the date and time my Buyers need to hear from the sellers. When seller"s receive an offer to purchase, they have three choices:accept it, counter it or decline it. If the seller's counter the offer, I deliver the counter offer back to my Buyers, then the Buyer's have the option to accept, counter offer or move on.
Once an agreement has been reached, there will be conditions that will have to be met within a specific time frame. These conditions can include, for example, financing, appraisal, home inspection and home insurance. All of the conditions agreed upon in the offer must be met by an assigned date.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
When I am representing a Buyer as a Buyer's Agent, I always insert a reponse date and time when the offer will expire. I ask my Buyers how long they want to keep the Offer open for acceptance by the Seller. Then I insert the date and time my Buyers have chosen.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
Whatever your offer says. Of course, if the time limit passes and you and the seller both want to continue with the offer, that's fines too, But an expiration date tells the seller that your offer is technically off the table as of the expeiration date, so if it is a good one, they need to act on it to avoid the chance of you pulling out because they didn't act in a timely manner.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
There is no time limit unless you have added an expiration date with the offer. Please contact me if I can be of additional assistance. Thanks.
Jennifer Rivera
571-292-5377 x 112
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
You can put a limitation in your offer that says exactly when the offer is no longer valid and so must be accepted by then.
You can also elect to withdraw your offer if you have not been rejected. If the makes a counter-offer, then your offer is considered in the law to have been rejected. If you got neither acceptance or a counter, then you can withdraw your offer up until the moment the seller accepts it.
If they make no response to you (and you didn't specify an expiration), they can basically hold your offer indefinitely.
Web Reference: http://wwwSumnerRealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
There is no set time unless you include one in the initial offer.
Web Reference: http://www.jimmccowan.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 14, 2010
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