In a perfect world, you will get multiple offers on your property and close a few weeks after listing your home. As anyone in the real estate business can tell you, this is the exception rather than the norm. In most cases, you will battle back and forth with a buyer until you finally agree on a deal. It is important to accept that there will be a certain amount of negotiation that is done with almost every transaction. The first step of the process starts with an offer. Getting an offer is usually an exciting time for a seller but is just the start of an intense few days. Here are a two important things you should do when you receive an offer on your property.
Review All Terms.It is easy to look at the purchase price and ignore everything else on the contract. The first thing you and your real estate agent should do with any offer received is review all the terms. There is no question how important price is, but it is just one of many factors. An offer close to full asking with a 90-day closing may not work for your situation. You need to figure out what is important to you. Are you willing to take the highest price with a lender financed offer over a cash offer at a lower amount? Only you can answer this, but you need to have a plan as you review the offer and decide to move forward. Now is the point in the transaction where you need to lean on your real estate agent and listen to their advice. They will be able to tell you if there is something funky on the contract that could be a red flag. They will take into consideration your goals and help with the next step in the process.
Act.There are basically three things you can do when an offer is presented. If the offer is ridiculously low, you can outright reject it and dismiss it all together. This is only advisable if you and your real estate agent feel they are not serious about the property and were only throwing a hail mary offer out there. The second thing you can do with an offer is accept it. If the offer checks all the boxes in terms of price, closing date, concessions, and conditions, there is no need to negotiate. Trying to squeeze something out of a willing buyer may irritate them to the point they don’t counter and move their interests elsewhere. The most common action with a new offer is to counter it. Your real estate agent will walk you through this process. It is not as easy as countering with a price that is in the middle of your asking price and their offer. Your real estate agent will take into consideration every area of the offer and make concessions in some places and take a stand in others. The perfect counter offer should be one that is accepted without a counter on their end but this isn’t always the case.
There can be several rounds of back and forth negotiation done by your real estate agent until both sides are happy and the deal is accepted. How you act when an offer is received can make or break the transaction. The initial offer is just the first step of a long process that hopefully ends with a signed contract.