Reverse offer to buyers

Asked by Gertrude, Marshfield, MA Sun Mar 20, 2011

We have been on the market for 180 (some-odd) days now officially :o( We listed too high (although we kind of knew it at the time) and are now priced at or a little below market value. We just listed with a new agent and we were able to get a new status, but the cumulative days are still following us around. We've had 5 showings in two weeks. All couples thought our house showed really well, immaculate, well maintained, etc., but 3 of 5 are looking for something closer to the xway, 1 wanted another bathroom and the last (today's showing) loves our house and loves the neighborhood and their realtor thinks they may consider making an offer. This is the closest that we have been to an offer. Our agent is recommending we possibly make a reverse offer to them. I have never heard of this practice and while I REALLY want our house sold, I fear that we will appear desperate. I know for a fact we are the best house in our price range, I just think our downfall was the bad initial price.

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Mack McCoy, Agent, Seattle, WA
Sun Mar 20, 2011
Dan's right (as usual). You're actually making a "reverse offer" now, by putting your property on the market, in public view, at a specific price. Why not offer the General Public the new low price, rather than just one party that has been sniffing around?
1 vote
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Sun Mar 20, 2011
I would consider making a reverse offer to everyone. If you drop the price while there is active interest, it may spur that interest to move quickly before others "find" your home. I've done this effectively and variations. If you make a reverse offer to a specific party, they may wonder how much lower you can go. Why not just drop the price and prepare for an offer?
1 vote
Judi Monday,…, Agent, Green Valley, AZ
Sat Mar 24, 2012
I have done a reverse offer with good results--it was done with a buyer that had been the house several times but couldn't seem to get off the fence to make the offer--we made the offer to them and it sold. However, in most cases I think it makes sense to simply drop the price and let the entire market benefit from your "reverse offer" --who knows it could bring in more than one buyer and perhaps net you more in the long run. Best of luck!
0 votes
Mary Condon, Agent, PPanama City, FL
Sat Mar 24, 2012
HI Gertrude,
First, I understand your frustration. You are not alone. Let go of the past and focus on now. Let's get back to basics: A home is worth only what a buyer is willing to pay today. Unfortunately, it doesn't matter "What you NEED to get for your home"
1. Have your agent tell you about every buying decision, as they happen, in your area of homes similar to yours. Ask your agent- " Did they see our home"? "Why did they buy that an not ours". Over a couple of weeks you will learn the answer and adjust accordingly.
2. Please do not add a cash bonus to a buyers agent - that cannot motivate them as they represent their client's ( buyer) best interest - not additional money for themselves. The buyers agent knows they WILL sell their client a house ( if they are under contract) so they no longer need to worry about making the sale and earning a living.
3. I would NOT offer a reverse offer to one buyer. Offer the lower price to all buyers and create competition.
4. If the addition of the bathroom in the lower level is inexpensive I would do it as bathrooms are rated high amongst buyers.
Mary Condon 508-479-9833 MA
0 votes
Caitlin Chri…, Agent, Marshfield, WI
Wed May 25, 2011
As some of the other realtor's mentioned you want to view the other homes around yours and see how you can set yours apart and make it stand out. You have mentioned that it is one of the nicer homes in its price range but have also mentioned the idea of adding another bathroom. Sometimes even if you have the nicer (upgrades) of two homes a buyer may go with the home with the second bathroom. You are lucky to have friends/family that could do the labor for free or discounted but a lot of people do not have that. You may want to ask your agent his or her advice on the bathroom but in my opinion if you can do it for cheap why not. If it makes your house go from a 1 bth to a 2 bth you are opening up your home to a larger pool of buyers. I have clients that do not even want to go see a 1bth even if you tell them there is space for a 2nd and the home is amazing! Youcould do that and then advertise the change and have your agent send flyers to buyers and their agents who have seen the home previously letting them know about the new bath and price! Hope this helps and good luck : )
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Mon Mar 21, 2011
What people say what they do are 2 different issues. Most buyers return within 24 - 48 hours. Reverse offer the listing agent contact buyers agent determine interest level of the buyers

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Loan Officer, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
0 votes
Mark Atteber…, Agent, Louisville, KY
Mon Mar 21, 2011
While 180 days seems like a long time, just look at WHICH 180 days. You listed after school started in the fall and just before the holidays. The market is breaking wide open at this time of year. If you need to be close to list and everyone agrees with the comps that this is already below market value, then price is no longer your problem or motivation. Be aware of your competition ~ other homes close to yours ~ and be prepared to make yours more attractive (price, ammenities, financing or bonuses either to buyer or their agent).

Good luck!

Mark Atteberry, SG Priest Realtors
Delivering Personal Service & Exceptional Results!
0 votes
Gertrude, Home Seller, Marshfield, MA
Mon Mar 21, 2011
Thanks! My concern is that we are pretty near our bottom number now, well, we are past what our bottom number is now, but we are going out on a limb (losing lots of money) in order to make it up on the other end and get into a house that's more comfortable for us/better commute for my husband, etc., for less money. I would love to drop it significantly, just to get it sold, but we are already selling it for less than we owe on it (not a short sale, we have the funds), plus paying out of pocket for the commission, so we really can't go much lower. I mean we can always find a little more money if we absolutely have to, but not enough that I think it would make a huge impact. We are now offering a cash bonus to buyers' agents. We had even considered adding a bathroom in our lower level (raised ranch), because my husband and various other family members could do it themselves. I thought this might give a larger impact than dropping the price the amount it would cost us (i.e., $3K) to do it. I am in no means looking to make money here. The thing that kills me is that when you look at other houses for sale in our area, in our price range, ours doesn't even look like it belongs. It is SO much nicer. I think that if it wasn't on the market for so long, it would be snatched up right away. I guess that's the lesson to learn! Never price your house too high out of the gate, or you'll end up selling it for even less in the end! Any other creative ideas to draw in offers from the buyers who are circling our house but just not making offers?
0 votes
Shirley Yuan, Agent, San Marino, CA
Sun Mar 20, 2011
It is good idea to make a reverse offer to them. You also could make reverse offer to everyone viewed your house during the 180 days.
0 votes
Suzanna Wood…, Agent, Springfield, VA
Sun Mar 20, 2011
I agree you want to sell your house. Your agent can send out a flyer to all the agents who have showed the house and let them know the price has been reduced.
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0 votes
Anna M Brocco, Agent, Williston Park, NY
Sun Mar 20, 2011
Why wait and keep playing catch up to the market, consider a price reduction instead....that way maybe more buyers will visit--the more visitors, the better the odds of an offer, or multiple offers....
0 votes
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