You’ve put your home on the market, and within days you are fielding an influx of offers. It’s the best-case scenario, but you feel uncertain as you’re pulled in opposite directions by compelling offers that meet different needs. Here are 4 options that I can offer to help with the chaos of multiple offers:
Option 1: Accept the best offer and reject the others.
When time is of the essence, and you have one clear stand-out offer, you can opt to speed up the process by choosing to move forward with the winner and reject the rest.
Going with the highest bid seems like the obvious choice. However, within each purchase contract with a host of contingencies can obscure what the buyer is actually offering and whether the sale is a sure thing or could potentially fall through. So you have to weigh all the terms in addition to the price.
Issues related to the home inspection (12%), buyer financing (6%), and appraisal (3%) are the most common culprits for closing delays. If a buyer can waive any of these, their offer strengthens. Special contingencies like the deal hinging on whether the buyer sells their existing home can also weaken an offer.
Option 2: Ignite a true “bidding war.”
According to the National Association of Realtors, “purchase offers generally aren’t confidential.” When you receive an offer from a buyer, you and I have no ethical or legal obligation to keep it a secret.
NAR instructs home buyers: “In some cases, sellers may make other buyers aware that your offer is in hand, or even disclose details about your offer to another buyer in hope of convincing that buyer to make a ‘better’ offer. In some cases sellers will instruct their listing broker to disclose an offer to other buyers on their behalf.”
This type of scenario marks the makings of a true bidding war.
Some buyers will be turned off by the aggressive negotiation strategy and walk away from the situation. In the event that no one wants to play your game, you’ve lost your multiple-offer moment. But, I will know whether buyers in your market can handle the stress of a bidding war. In competitive cities filled with high-profile business professionals and a fast-paced way of life, it might be the best way to go.
Also, if you only have one good offer, then this option is off the table. You can’t create bidding wars with bad offers even if you have multiple bids. I am happy to help you with the chaos of multiple offers.
Option 3: Let all interested parties know that there are multiple offers and invite them to put their best foot forward.
I can ask your buyers to come forward with their “best and final” offer without revealing the specifics of your best offer at the moment.
This approach essentially leaves you fielding a round of new offers without having to wonder if your buyers will go any higher given a little more time.
While you’re waiting for the other, lower offers to adjust, I can call the highest offer and let them know that you are expecting higher offers and if they’d like to seal the deal they might want to come in with their “highest and best” now.
This puts a little extra pressure on each buyer to sweeten the pot. Plus, it allows sellers to retain more control over the terms and pricing of their home. Think of it as reshuffling the deck in your favor.
Option 4: Counter the best offer and keep a few waiting in the wings.
Let’s say one offer is a clear favorite, but you just need to iron out a few contract details. In this case, you might want to counter the best offer to see if you can get the terms you want. Once you reach an agreement I will let the others know you went with another offer.
This approach lets you negotiate an almost-perfect offer. I can let the buyer know that you’ve got a few other interested parties, but you’d like to move forward with them if they’ll meet these terms.
You’ll have the opportunity to iron out the kinks in good faith, then I will ask for a back up offer from the next strongest offer! If negotiations unexpectedly go south, you’ve got a backup.
If you are planning on selling your house, please contact me for help with the chaos of multiple offers!
Beth Brake REALTOR®
Positively changing your life as you move toward your dreams.