Tip for Sellers - Dealing with Offers

By
Real Estate Agent with Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com 10301213186

You listened to your agent's input prior to putting your home on the market. You scrubbed, cleaned, removed personal items to storage, staged, painted, gardened, and in many other ways prepared your home for sale. When your home went on the market, you kept it clean, mowed the lawn, fixed things the second they broke, left the house for showings, and did everything as requested. And then you received an offer!!

 

The offer is such a key part of the process of selling a home. It feels like it's time to celebrate!

 

Here are a few tips about how to handle offers and what's important to know.

 

The "low-ball" offer

The home you love, that you have lived in perhaps for decades, and have taken the time to prepare for buyers... that's the home on which a buyer just submitted a low offer. Your first response might be to just say NO. How dare they? Don't they know what the home is worth? They just insulted you by offering much less than your list price. You don't even WANT them to have the house. They obviously wouldn't appreciate all it has to offer. But instead of immediately responding with a "NO," it would be more effective to put all emotions on the back burner and deal with the offer objectively.

 

The buyers want your house. If they didn't, they wouldn't have made any offer at all. Perhaps this is the first time they've ever made an offer on a home. Maybe their real estate agent didn't provide them with a good market analysis. Or perhaps they believe all offers should start really low because after all, you "never know!". Maybe they think they know more than their agent and they decided this was the number they should start with. You probably won't know what their motivation was for the low offer. But the point is, you have an offer in your hands, and you should try to make it work.

 

That doesn't mean accepting it as is. What you could do is respond with a counter-offer. Your real estate agent would be able to help you figure out what type of counter might work, but one strategy might be to come back just slightly less than list price. That would send the message that you are willing to negotiate but you're not giving your house away. There are instances where buyers and sellers countered many times, back and forth, and the seller wound up getting a price right around their listing price.

 

Other options might be to let the buyer know their offer was too low and is not acceptable as is. But if they are truly interested in your home, you would consider a better offer. This would also make it clear that you are open to negotiation, but only if their offer is reasonable. Or perhaps, if you have a "must have" limit, you could even say, look here's what I want, take it or leave it. All of these options keep the conversation going and could result in a price that is acceptable to you.

 

Isn't it all about the price?

Many sellers believe an offer is all about the price. But there are many components that may be important to you and all of those are negotiable. Let's say, for argument's sake, that you received three offers. All are at the list price. So how would you choose the "right" one if price is not a factor?

 

Tip for Sellers - Dealing with OffersClosing Date: Are you in a hurry to sell your home? Do you need to be in your next location by a certain date? Or do you want to delay the sale as long as possible so that school is done, or your next home is ready? Choosing (or negotiating) based on closing date could be one option that would make or break an offer.

 

Inspection: Does the buyer want an inspection of your home? Are they doing the inspection for their information only? Or are they doing the inspection for the purpose of requesting repairs or deciding if they want to move forward? The offer that doesn't include an inspection contingency or a buyer that is just doing one for their information is a stronger offer.

 

Tip for Sellers - Dealing with OffersMortgage/Cash: There are so many different types of financing available. A buyer could come with a pre-approval for a VA, FHA, USDA, conventional or renovation loan for example. If your home has any kind of safety or structural issues, a VA or FHA loan may be tricky to get to the closing table. If the buyer wants to make updates to the home and is using a renovation loan, the timeframe to get to closing will be longer than a regular loan. If the buyer indicates they are using cash and have legitimate proof of funds, then that may be the best choice, depending on other aspects of the offer. So there are many factors to consider, even just with the type of financing.

 

Down Payment: The down-payment that is offered is also important. The buyer's down payment will go into an escrow account and be applied at closing as appropriate. If the buyer disappears without a trace and walks out of the deal for no reason, that down payment is often retained by the seller who has to put their home back on the market. Accordingly, the down payment is "skin in the game" for the buyer. With three same-priced offers, if one has a larger down payment, you may feel safer taking your home off the market for that specific buyer.

 

Other Items: Buyers could ask for other items as part of their offer. They might want you to leave that great lawn mower, lawn furniture, or armoire. They may want the appliances to stay or want them removed. Perhaps they want the roof repaired and the septic cleaned before closing. Or maybe they'll offer to take the house with the "junk" room intact and they'll get rid of those items. Any other requests could be reasons to select or reject any specific offer.

 

Bottom Line

Getting an offer for your home is an exciting part of the home sales process. In order to move that offer to an accepted offer, which is the goal, it's important to not only look at price, but at every aspect. And if the price is way too low, negotiate anyway. It's quite possible that a low offer will end up being one that works perfectly for you.

 

If you're interested in selling your Monroe NY, Orange or Rockland County home, feel free to contact me at 914-419-0270 or kat@thehousekat.com. I'd be happy to help you!

 

 

Originally posted at thehousekat.com.

Posted by

 

Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat

Licensed Associate Broker, CBR®

Grand Lux Realty, Inc.

428 Main Street

Armonk, NY 10504 *

* still supporting Monroe NY, Orange & Rockland counties.

 

914-419-0270 (cell)

email: kat@thehousekat.com

www.thehousekat.com

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Rainmaker
614,717
Jeff Masich-Scottsdale AZ Associate Broker,MBA,GRI
HomeSmart Real Estate - Scottsdale, AZ
Arizona Homes and Land Group/ Buy or Sell

Great points Kat Palmiotti and as you point out there are many motivating points in an offer and not just the price. Jeff 

Apr 17, 2019 01:22 PM #1
Rainmaker
272,572
Dave Rosenmarkle
Highland Realty - Arlington, VA
32 years of providing fully satisfying service!

Sometimes I am a little nervous when a buyer does not complete a home inspection (unless all cash ), particularly if they still have an out by rejecting the HOA docs.

Apr 17, 2019 03:10 PM #2
Rainmaker
1,139,438
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

HI Kat Palmiotti - I had an extremely low ball offer on one of my homes that is now in contract - $75,000 off the list price.  My sellers rejected the offer. They felt the buyers would be extremely difficult to deal with.  I know the agent and she is very experienced. She called me and was furious that we did not counter back.  I think she had a strategy to see how far down the sellers would move. It blew up in her face.  

Apr 17, 2019 05:14 PM #3
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Jeff Masich-Scottsdale AZ Associate Broker,MBA,GRI - an offer is not all about price.

Dave Rosenmarkle - for my buyer clients, I always recommend they get an inspection! 

 

Apr 18, 2019 03:05 AM #4
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Sheri Sperry - MCNE® - And now that agent learned something new! :-)

Apr 18, 2019 03:05 AM #5
Ambassador
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Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
RE/MAX Northwest. - Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Washington Agent/Broker & Market Authority!

 I have been fortunate that all of my offers have been for full price this past month. It really cuts down on my negotiation skills 😀 Kat Palmiotti 

Apr 18, 2019 07:03 AM #6
Rainmaker
2,420,175
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

You are right about most sellers reaction to a lowball offer and it is easy for them to feel like the prospective buyers don't truly want their home with such a weak offer, even though they made an offer.

Apr 18, 2019 07:37 AM #7
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Well that's great Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS - That does make things easy!

I totally understand how sellers feel when they get a low offer, Brian England . I had a buyer once who insisted on making a low offer - the first house they made it on, the sellers refused to counter or even consider a future offer. That house is still on the market three years later, now at the price my client offered. The second house they made an offer on responded to them, and they wound up paying a price both parties agreed to. So sellers really need to respond!

Apr 18, 2019 12:03 PM #8
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Kat- this is something that agents can address before the horse gets out of the barn. Even though sellers are leaving their house, it is still a personal matter for them and they can get offended with anything less than a full price offer. You addressed all the possible points well. 

Apr 18, 2019 12:41 PM #9
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Kathy Streib - Yes, it's important to address this before the house even gets on the market.

Apr 19, 2019 02:43 AM #10
Rainmaker
1,949,876
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
DFW FINE PROPERTIES - Southlake, TX
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Kat Palmiotti - You point out many good points for sellers to consider. Sellers would be wise to listen to what you have to say.

Happy Easter and have a nice weekend.

Apr 19, 2019 09:47 AM #11
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP - I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend as well!

Apr 19, 2019 09:55 AM #12
Rainmaker
1,828,510
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good afternoon Kat - your approach will help take the emotion out of this.  Those are all great alternatives.

Apr 19, 2019 10:40 AM #13
Rainmaker
1,389,909
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

Thank you Grant Schneider - One of the hardest parts of selling a house is taking out the emotion!

Apr 20, 2019 03:07 AM #14
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