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2016-09-16 15:33:12
How to Treat the Lowball Offer

When you put your home on the market, be prepared for at least one lowball offer. You may not get one, but it’s good to be prepared should it come along. Preparation, in this case, means understanding that the buyer isn’t intentionally insulting you or your home. Some buyers treat the home purchase process as a haggling-fest, feeling they should lowball to the point of ridiculousness.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with entertaining such offers but it depends on the current real estate market. In a slow market you might want to counteroffer, standing firm on your price or even lowering the price a little, if you need to get the home sold.

In a seller’s market, however, you’ll most likely have better offers so there’s no need to waste your time responding to a ridiculously low offer. The buyer will give a time limit in which you are to respond to the offer, so if you simply ignore the offer it will expire. The buyer can either come back with a more realistic price or move on to another house for sale.

Lacking additional offers you may still wish to reject the low-baller. Although we are always 100 percent sure that the price range we've suggested for our listing clients is accurate, we are happy to run the comps again just to make sure the market hasn't drastically changed overnight. If it appears that we still have the data to justify the asking price, and you have the time to wait for another offer, sometimes a rejection of the ridiculous offer is your best bet.

In a slow market, many home sellers feel that a low offer may be better than no offer. If the offer contains a request for concessions, you have a little more bargaining power. You can counter the offer on price or terms so that the buyer feels that the outcome is a win-win for both sides.

If, on the other hand, the offer is acceptable to you, in both price and terms, you will sign it and we'll send it back to the buyer's agent. We now have an executed contract with clearly defined tasks and time limits. It's time to take the next step towards closing.

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