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How to deal with counter offers when buying a home

Preparing to buy a home exposes you to situations where sellers make counteroffers to your original offer. The way you handle such situations can determine whether or not the home will be yours.
So, what is the ideal way of dealing with a counteroffer?

Comparable sales

To make sure you buy the home at a reasonable price, it is vital that you don’t aim too low or too high. This can be done by taking a look at the values of similar homes in the area. Doing so will give you an idea of a reasonable price that will resonate with the buyer.
Without proper comparison, chances are that you may overspend on the home or place a low offer that the seller will not bother to respond to. Thus, it is best to first talk to your real estate agent. They can give you common pricing trends to get a good idea of how much you should offer for a home you’re interested in.
We at California Lifestyle Realty can provide you with the necessary data in this process.

The seller-to-buyer counteroffer
Depending on the offer you make, the seller can choose to respond in the following ways:

  • They can accept your offer without giving any conditions.
  • They can make a counteroffer to change one or more conditions.
  • They can ignore you completely.

The sale price is the most common focus of negotiations. The seller will usually want something closer to their original asking price. Negotiations may also be made regarding the closing date. They might bargain for more time to move. You, in turn, can strike some compromises with the seller or leave the negotiation and move on.

Other things that may merit counteroffers include:

  • Contributions for closing costs
  • Earnest money deposit
  • Requested contingencies by the buyer

Dealing with the counteroffer

You should be prepared to move quickly when the seller issues a counteroffer. Not acting on it at once may give the seller the idea that they can accept other offers. After all, you are still undecided whether to agree to the counteroffer or not.

On the side of the seller, they should deal with one offer at a time. That means they cannot accept another offer before rejecting the first one. However, as this is going on, there could be another buyer waiting in the wings with a better offer. You as the buyer should be unfazed by this and instead, ask questions, review the new offer, and do some personal research.

If the counteroffer is within your purchase price and has favorable terms, you may choose to accept it and close the deal. Or you can still counter for a review of certain conditions you want changed.

In case the counteroffer does not appeal to you in any way, you might be better off withdrawing from the purchase. If this is the case, do it in writing. Observe basic courtesy by letting the seller know of your withdrawal instead of just letting the counteroffer expire.

Employ the right agent

When making an offer or counteroffer, it is best to consult with the experts. Be it a townhouse or a luxury home, our experienced real estate agents at California Lifestyle Realty can get you the property you want in La Quinta, Palm Desert, or Indian Wells. Get started today by calling 760.564.1200 or by sending an email to info(at)calilifestylerealty(dotted)com.