What do you do when "best and final offer" is asked for?

Asked by Katherine, Scotch Plains, NJ Sun Feb 19, 2012

We gave asking price and now were asked for our "best and final offer. The asking price was $11,000 below our comfort number.

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15
John Sacktig, Agent, New Jersey, NJ
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Katherine, "best and final offer" or “Highest and Best” as noted below usually comes into play when there are multiple offers. This a way to get everyone to their higest price to select a winner of the bidding for the house.

O.k.. that is what they want you to hear. But, in reality the terms above are made up to get everyone, all the bids, up to one supposed final number. Yeah, right. There is no highest and best.

The highest and best will be the final highest bid for the house. If you STILL want the house… BID AGAIN! The offer has to be presented. The seller cares about getting the most for the house. Period. Not some made up game called highest and best.

If you lose the highest and best and you WANT the house? Go again and tell the listing agent you want to make another higher offer. I have seen people state, whatever you have as an offer I will pay $5000.00 more. Realistically, the $5000. Over 30 years is pretty low for the buyer, but $5000 for the seller.

Comfort level? It depends on how much you want the house and what you want to pay for it.
3 votes
Judi Monday,…, Agent, Green Valley, AZ
Tue Feb 21, 2012
First find out what the market value is for the house in question--as your Realtor to run current comps and make sure you understand them. Then ask yourself, what the amount is that you WANT to spend on the house--and how MUCH are you willing to lose the house over--if that is $5,000 or even $11,000 then that's your answer.
1 vote
Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Tue Feb 21, 2012
Hi Katherine, you are in a competitive multiple offer situation - not unusual right for the best inventory in desireable communities like Scotch Plains. You should assume that this is your last shot, and offer the best terms you are willing to offer - look at price, down payment, and closing timeframe. I concur with Terri - think about the point at which you would walk away without regret so that you can live with the result no matter how it shakes out. In situations like this do not try to be too clever - remember you have company.

Talk to your agent and get her advice, but you are off to a good start with the combined input from the gang here on Trulia.

Good luck to you,
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service, Unsurpassed Results
1 vote
Tressa "TERI"…, Agent, Westfield, NJ
Mon Feb 20, 2012
Katherine ... you're being asked for your "best and final" offer because there are other offers on the table. The question now is not "what is it worth?" The question now is "What is it worth to ME?"

Ask yourself "If I loose this house because my offer was shy $1,000, will I wish I'd raised it by that amount?" If the answer is yes, raise your offer by that amount. At the end of the day, only you know what THAT house is worth to YOU.

Hope this helps ....
Teri Malone, KW
1 vote
Terry Bell, Agent, Santa Rosa, CA
Sun Feb 19, 2012
First, have your agent do comps again to see what is the most your lender will appraise the house for. Unless you are prepared to put a large down payment you will need to stay within the appraisal. If you really like a home, have the funds, think in terms of what $5 or $10K comes out to in financing over your 30 yr. mortgage.
1 vote
Roland Vinya…, Agent, Sprakers, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Do just that. Don't go beyond your comfort range; make it a figure where if you do not succeed, you will not feel so bad and if you do get the winning bid, you will be elated. There are two components to offers: what you can afford and the emotional side, how attached you are to it. They both need to be acknowledged.
1 vote
Alain Picard, Agent, Puyallup, WA
Sun Feb 19, 2012
If you really want the property you should give your best offer because when the bank asks for the best and final offer they are about to make a decision on who's offer they are going to accept. A lot of times there is more then one party interested in the property and there are multiple offers.
1 vote
Jim Starwalt, Agent, Grayslake, IL
Tue Feb 21, 2012
Hi Katherine,
Have your agent ask the question, that has been assumed here! Is there any other offers on the table right now? Are there multiple offers?
So far there has only Been assumptions, you did not state that here are multiples!
Pretty slick trick to just ask for highest and best without stating that there are other offers, leaving you to just assume.
There probably is, but did your agent ask, or was is stated?
Good luck Jim
0 votes
elizabethe…, Agent, gillette, NJ
Mon Feb 20, 2012
Not only the offer # but also consider the terms of the offer-all of which goes along w/best and final. Sometimes the terms(ie, all cash, no contingencies , etc) will make the difference also.
liz r. Century 21
0 votes
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Katherine,
The first thing to do is to decide how badly you want the specific home. If you have been looking a long time and would lose sleep if it got away from you, your offer should reflect this. If this is just another home and you are aware of others you like equally well, make the offer that reflects this.
Best and final usually indicates you are in a multiple offer scenario. Good homes that are well priced are going at and sometimes over list price. Ask your agent for their best advice regarding the value range and make the offer you are willing to stand behind regardless of the outcome. Best wishes for success.
0 votes
Lorena Barbo…, Agent, Westfield, NJ
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Katherine,

There are a few options-you can stick to your number and possibly win the home, or you may still lose it if someone else's # is higher. You may even up your offer and still the lose the home. Have your realtor give you the comparables and if you are still below market value, double check your finances and if you can afford it, go up. It sounds like the home may have been priced below market value if there are multiple bids. Good luck - hope you will be my neighbor in the next town!
0 votes
John Juarez, Agent, Fremont, CA
Sun Feb 19, 2012
“Best and Final Offer” is what is usually indicative of multiple offers being received by a seller who does not want to make a counter offer at a specific price but wants the buyers to “bid” their best “bid” to buy the property.
Your choices are:
Cancel your offer.
Or
Notify the seller that you are standing on your existing offer.
Or
Make an improved offer.

If you chose to make an improved offer, you should make your final offer because you should not expect a counter offer to your new offer.

If you want the property, make an offer that will either get you the property or allow you to say that you tried your best and it was just not doable.
0 votes
Wayne Odenbr…, Agent, Mountain Lakes, NJ
Sun Feb 19, 2012
This is usually used when there is more than one offer.
Is thatthe case?

What is the home worth to you?
Then make that offer.
But do not violate your own good judgement.
If you do, you may regret it later.
0 votes
allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Comfort level that you can feel you are not overpaying beyond your means. If not, move on!
0 votes
Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Sun Feb 19, 2012
Stay within your means, and if you'd like make your final and best offer....
0 votes
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