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Allie, Both Buyer and Seller in Chicago, IL

If there is an offer on a house contingent upon a buyer sellign their property, can someone else make an offer?

Asked by Allie, Chicago, IL Sat Apr 14, 2012

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Great question and be sure to read all the other fine answers expressed below.
If you are a buyer who has needs which are satisfied by a property with a house sale contingency, I strongly recommend putting in a back up offer. Here are four thoughts to consider:
1). A house contingency tells you the seller is sincere and has agreed upon an acceptable sales price.
2). You would be surprised how many seller representatives will provide you with the price and terms their seller will accept if asked. If you are able to match the price and better terms your position is greatly improved. The seller may even accept a lower price if you learn what terms may benefit the seller.
3). Your back up offer, if accepted, may give the seller the comfort to require the first buyer to waive their contingency (which may not be possible without the proceeds from the sale of their property) or perhaps further negotiate with the buyer on matters that might not be acceptable to the first buyer; thereby causing the existing contract to cancel and giving you the the ability to buy the property.
4). Consider a clause in your back-up contract which enables you to cancel in the event you find a better purchase. You can continue searching for better properties. This clause may also expedite the seller's willingness to cancel the first contract in the event the buyer did not perform according to the contract terms.
Be sure to have your lawyer prepare the contract terms as they are beyond the legal scope of a licensed real estate agent.
Hope this helps,

Bill Altier
Licensed Broker
Since 1977
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012


It is very likely that the current Buyer would not be able to purchase the new home without selling their current home, which would be good for you should they accept your offer. If the contract is HOME SALE contingent and NOT HOME CLOSE contingent, that is to your benefit as HOME SALE contingencies are the weaker of the two.

FYI, the status in MRED of HS48 lets you know that the contract is HOME SALE contingent with a 48-hour kickout clause. Similarly, a status of HC72 lets you know that the contract is HOME CLOSE contingent with a 72-hour kickout clause.

Hope that helps!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Yes there is usually a 48-72 hr kick out clause
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
You can make a backup offer in case the first offer does not go through.

Sohail A. Salahuddin | Broker Associate I Visionary
Innovative Property Consultants Team l Sales and Leasing
Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty
425 W. North Ave. | Chicago, IL 60610 

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0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Selling a house in Lake View that the Sellers/Investor Group wanted to move fast so they priced it about 10% under estimated Top Market Value. In days, there was a cash offer with a sale contingency of a property free & clear of any mortgage (allowing this buyer to finance the current house if push came to shove to keep purchase in full force). Second offer came in with typical mortgage contingency with a 30 day closing date (very attractive to Sellers) and then a third which was an acceptable back-up offer to the previous offers! All Accepted and still showing this house! I only wish the Agents could get paid on every contract!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Yes, someone else can make an offer. The current buyer negotiated with the sellers a certain period of time (48 hrs, 72 hrs, etc) for them to release the contingency. The new offer has to be ready to go though - fully executed contract, inspections made and negotiated, etc. to exercise the clause. The house never goes pending because that contingency remains to the very end. Buyers usually shy away from houses that are not fully available, and in most cases that makes sense but I think in these cases it's a good option to explore because in the majority of cases that house close contingency is there because it has to be there, and most of the time the buyer is not in a position to remove it. But the kick-out offer cannot have a house sale contingency, and will no doubt need to be a stronger offer, depending on how confident the seller is with the likelihood of the buyers house selling, and how far down the path they already are. If the sale all looks good, there may not be enough reason to upset the apple cart.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Yes, you can make an offer even if the seller has accepted a contingent offer.

Best of luck,

Ivan Sagel
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
The contingency should have a kick- out clause allowing the current contract purchaser a time period (48hrs, 72hrs) to decide if they want to remove that contingency and keep their contract if another offer is presented to the seller that the seller wants to accept.
So you can certainly make a offer, if the seller wishes to move forward with your offer then the original buyer will have that option first if they want to waive the contingency preventing the new offer from being accepted. Unless the original buyer has a very solid prospect to buy their own home it may be difficult for them to waive that contingency, thus enabling the new offer to be accepted.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Of course!! 99% of contracts have a Rider that syas if another offer comes in the seller can give the existing buyer a time frame.....24-72hrs, to remove the contingency or the seller can walk away from the deal and take yours. Why doesn't your agent know this??
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
Absolutely! You can make an offer at any time and the listing agent is required to present it to the seller - even if there is no contingency like you describe.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 14, 2012
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