Today's blog on How to Sell Your San Diego Home without a Realtor addresses real estate offers and counter offers.
Once you start showing your hone, you will undoubtedly receive some offers. All offers should be accompanied by a lender 'pre-approval" letter as well as proof of buyer's funds. After all, you don't want to take your home off the market unless the buyer has the documented resources.
I do believe it is wise to have either a Real Estate Broker or Real Estate Attorney review the purchase contract. This is a large, complicated sale and you want to make sure you 1) understand the contract and 2) are being treated fairly. I have in fact seen buyer's agents try to take advantage of home sellers who do not have a Realtor.
If you are handling the offers without a Realtor or Attorney, then you might ask the buyer's agent to send you a blank counter offer form. This will allow you to write out any changes that you would like to see in the agreement. Counter offers can go back and forth for several rounds or both parties may come to agreement after just one counter offer. One both parties have signed the contract and the final counter offer, it is time to open escrow.
Deciding which offer to take when you have mutltiple offers (which is common in my city of San Diego) is a daunting process. You generally speaking, want to select a buyer with a higher down payment, conventional loan or cash. That said, if your only buyer has a VA or FHA loan, and they make the only offer you receive, you should absolutely take it. I would caution you against automaticcally choosing the offer with the highest dollar amount. If your home doesn't appraise for the offer price, you will be asked to re-negotiate the price.
As a final note on this topic, I am a big believer in cultivating back up offers. Real estate transactions fall through every day, and the percentage is even higher among 'for sale' by owner' deals. You might want to keep all the offers that you received. You also might want to keep showing your home for the first couple of weeks of the new escrow. My motto has always been 'hope for the best, prepare for the worst."
For information about my a-a-carte Real Estate services, as well as my low-cost listing packages, please check out my website: http://1sandiegohomesales.com/sellers/for-sale-by-owner/.