if you put in a offer then should they make you a counter offer before they let some one else buy it?to see if you would offer more.

Asked by Shelia, Cullman County, AL Fri Oct 22, 2010

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Liz Hoffman, Agent, Daphne, AL
Sat Oct 23, 2010
A seller is not obligated to respond to an offer. They are at liberty to accept whatever offer they choose. Once a seller has responded with a counter-offer they can't work other offers without first withdrawing their counter prior to acceptance. Many sellers who recieve multiple offers go back to the prospective purchaser's agents and advise them of the multiple offer situation and advise them to tell their clients to submit their highest and best offers within a certain time frame, but they are not obligated to do so. by the way, there used to be a misunderstanding about offers, that whichever offer was received by the seller first should be worked first, but that absolutely isn't the case. Hope this helps.
1 vote
Trevolyn Hai…, Agent, Highland, CA
Sat Oct 23, 2010
Hello Shelia,
I don't know what your offer looked like compared to what this seller was asking but...

Some questions to ask yourself when writing an offer:
~How desirable is the home and neighborhood?
~What are the comps (other similar homes that have recently sold)?- Is the home at, higher than or lower? (If the home is lower, you will probably need to offer more than the asking price).
~What is the market like (i.e. are multiple offers likely)?
~How close will your offer's net (i.e. after seller concessions what is your offer worth) to what the sellers are asking? (I find it funny when the buyers agent tells me they are offering 'full price' on a listing but then I read in the contract that they are asking for the seller to pay the buyers closing costs).
~How much do you like and want the home?

I usually encourage my clients to write their 'highest and best' offer on those homes that they love because, as you found out, most of the time, a buyer can not be assured to get a counter and it really hurts them to find out that they got beat by another offer that was within the range of what they would have been willing to do.

Currently interest rates are so low that for every $10,000 offered, the payment increases less than $50 per month. Most people spend more than that for a dinner out, going to the movies or a week of Starbucks, so wouldn't it be a good trade to give up just one of those things every month & get the home you desire?

Also, don't forget to give the sellers desirable terms such as letting them pick the providers of escrow and title services- it won't make too much of a difference for you but it will mean something to them.

Re: this home; if you can make your offer better, do it & have your agent submit it as a back up offer (if they already accept the other offer) because you may get lucky.

Best of luck,
1 vote
Shane Willis, Agent, Pensacola, FL
Fri Apr 8, 2011
It depends on if you were notified that you were in highest and best. If you have been informed as such then think about just that. What is the highest and best offer you will make. If they have countered and you are in the timeframe they must deal with you first. For instance I just had a bank counter me and only give me 24 hours to respond. My buyers were unavailable until 48 hours and the counter was withdrawn and the property placed in a highest and best offer status because of another buyer writing an offer. That kind of sucked but we came back with a good offer and won the bid.

Good Luck
Shane Willis MBA, CDPE
0 votes
Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Sat Oct 23, 2010

The Seller has the right idea, Shelia. The 2nd offer "stepped up to the plate," made a better offer from the get-go, and the Seller prefers to work with the Big Spender than with Sheila the Low-Baller.

You can't win them all.
0 votes
Francine Tur…, , Orange Beach, AL
Sat Oct 23, 2010
Hi Sheila - IF you had been advised that there are multiple offers on the property and to offer your highest and best, including the removal of contingencies if applicable, the seller is not obligated to counter. Hope this helps.
0 votes
John Juarez, Agent, Fremont, CA
Sat Oct 23, 2010
As seller is not obligated to give a counter offer to you before accepting alternate offer. If you feel that the house that you want is slipping away, contact your agent and possible revise your offer before it is too late.
0 votes
Robert Nowak, Agent, Chicago, IL
Sat Oct 23, 2010
The seller has the right to accept, reject, or counter your offer based on all the terms presented, not just the sale price. In a multiple offer situation with similar terms the sellers agent may ask for everyones highest and best offer. Cash offers and offers with solid financing get priority
0 votes
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