Have a question about selling your house?
When an offer is made
What are your options?
After all the hard work of prepping your house for sale, staging the house, fitting showings into your schedule and more, you finally have an offer from a potential buyer. What to do now?
There are three options you have when an offer is made:
- Accept the offer. When you accept the offer, you are agreeing to proceed with the sale. This includes any contingencies that the buyer has written into the offer, such as, an acceptable inspection and appraisal of the house, their ability to procure an acceptable loan and homeowner's insurance, among others.
- Make a counter offer.If you choose to make a counter offer, you are agreeing to certain terms of the offered contract, but wish to alter or change some part of the agreement. This could include a change in the price, any date or deadline, or any of of the other many terms and conditions written into the offer. Once you submit a counter offer to the buyers, they then have the choice to accept your counter offer, or submit a new proposed counter offer to your original counter offer, or reject it. Each counter offer becomes an addendum to the original contract, and the contract is only considered accepted once both parties have signed the last composed counter offer, agreeing to all terms proposed throughout the original contract and all counter offers. There is no limit to the number of counter offers you and the buyers may submit back and forth, however, you may also choose to reject any of the counter offers the buyers submit at any point in time, thus terminating the contract. The buyers also have the same option of rejecting any counter offer you submit to them, also terminating the contract.
- Reject the offer. You last option is to reject the offer. Rejecting the offer terminates all proposed terms of the contract. The buyers will move on to look at other properties, and your house will remain on the market until another offer is submitted.
As you can see here, there are a LOT of negotiations and possibilities involved when you receive an offer on your house. That is why it's so important to make sure you hire a professional REALTOR to help you navigate through all of the various contingencies and options available to you to make sure that you get top dollar for your house.
Generally speaking, the first offers are typically the best offers. While this isn't always 100% true, studies have shown that the longer a house sits on the market, the less likely it is to get a full asking price offer.