This post is aimed at helping those who are selling their house on their own, or with another realtor. I provide this information to all of my clients, but sometimes people don’t work with me, or choose to go a different route so I wanted to share different practices on how to go through the offer process.
So, You have marketed your home, you’ve had showings, and you’ve just gotten an offer. What do you do next? It really depends on what the offer looks like. The type of offer will help you decide if it is worth accepting, countering, or rejecting it entirely. I personally would never recommend rejecting an offer, because someone writing you an offer is an invitation to have a conversation about where people want to go. Sometimes people really just want to offer low, and I know that it can be really insulting and hurt your feelings as a seller, especially because you are the homeowner. In the buyer’s mind, they are just trying to see what they can get and some people are just that way. You can counter back at your list price, you can counter back and meet in the middle, but there are many factors that need to be considered besides just the dollar amount.
You need to look at what they are including in the purchase price. Have they included? Are they asking for a case of toilet paper on top of everything else? (That has happened recently) Maybe they are asking for the fridge when you weren’t planning on leaving the fridge. These are all important details to look into because that could change the value of their offer. If you were going to keep your fridge, and they are now asking for your $2,000 fridge, that’s another $2,000 off the price, and now makes the offer less.
Next important thing to look into is what their financing looks like. Are they a strong borrower with good down payment, good credit, or are they going to have issues? How do you even know? That is where the approval letter comes in and having to call and talk with the loan officer. Your realtor should do this for you. We have a list of questions that we ask the loan officer just to get around the “yeah I’ve done all the checks…” because sometimes some loan officers just talk to the person on the phone, but they haven’t actually verified any of the information they’ve heard on the phone, haven’t seen bank statements, or even verified job history. This is all super important right now, especially with all the job loss going on. You want to make sure that your buyer is a strong buyer, and not in a job field that is going to lose their job 2 days before closing, putting you back on the market for another 30-45 days. These are all things as a seller that you want to have analysed before you ever accept an offer.
Deadlines are also super important! How long is the actual contract, because the contract itself is between 30-45 days. Are they asking for 60-90 days? And if they are, Why? These are all super important questions to ask as you go through the offer so it’s not all about purchase price. On the addendum they could be asking you for closing costs, so they might have offered $10,000 above listing price, but they are also asking for $10,000 in closing costs and that makes the net 0.
The next question to consider is: Would you house actually appraise for $10,000 above listing price or not?
I was talking to a seller today who has hired a company who is marketing as a “discount broker” and they had the home listed and they ended up taking an offer that netted them less than what it would have cost them to hire their own realtor to guide them through this whole process. The reason I was even talking to them is because they called me a couple times to ask for advice on what the showing situation looked like, and what was going on in the market. Their realtor should have done all this for them, but because they hired a limited service company, they weren’t getting the full service they needed to get the answers to these questions. I wanted to help out and be nice, so I answered the questions but in reality I
shouldn’t have because it put me in a liable situation.
If you are looking for a professional Realtor to help you through this process, who works full time as a Realtor, and that’s it- Reach out to me, I would love to help you through the buying and selling process.