They Offered What?!?
Every seller looks forward to the day they get their first offer on their home - and many sellers are a little disappointed. Chances are, your buyer's first offer is lower than what you're willing to accept - and lower than what he or she is willing to pay.
When you get your first offer on the home, don't take it personally. The amount offered is not a reflection on the years of memories you have in your home, or the hours of work you put into preparing it for market. It's just the buyer's initial step in the dance of negotiating price.
It's also important to remember that the offer is more than just a number. It's a contract saying what the buyer wants to receive, what he or she is offering to pay, and what conditions must be met for the sale to take place. These conditions, called contingencies, are an important part of the process. Some of the most common ones include:
- Final financing approval. Even if your buyer is pre-approved for a mortgage, he or she will need to get the loan approved for your specific home.
- Title assurance. This refers to your clear ownership of the property you're selling.
- The buyer selling his or her current home.
- Specific repairs the buyer wants you to make.
- Certain fixtures, such as window treatments or some appliances, staying behind.
The offer also will include a deadline for you to accept or make a counteroffer.
After we discuss the initial offer and you consider how it lines up with your goals, we then make a counteroffer. Maybe you're willing to split the difference between the asking price and the first offer. Maybe you're willing to accept a little less money for the home if you can keep a favorite fixture.
While the dance of offers and counteroffers goes on, we'll continue to show the home and court other buyers. The more people you have interested in your home, the higher your final sales price will be, and the better your chances of making a great deal.