“The first offer is your best offer.” Countless agents (including myself) have tried to explain this to clients as we discuss the sale of their home. This isn’t a sales gimmick, nor are we trying to make a “quick sale.” Emphasizing the importance of the first offer has nothing to do with money. This is a genuine attempt to educate clients about the opportunity before them, and why they should take that offer seriously.
By the time a person is ready to submit an offer, they have invested a lot into the home buying process. That buyer has contacted a lender, gone through the steps of becoming pre-approved and has looked at multiple houses before committing to one. The search for the right home can take weeks or months. The buyer may have even submitted offers on other homes only to lose out to a stronger, more qualified buyer. Eventually your home caught their eye and they liked it enough to make that rare and special thing: An Offer. You may not like the proposed amount, but you should take time to evaluate the opportunity before you. To help you come to a decision, I suggest analyzing the offer against the following criteria.
Is the number similar to what your Realtor said your home was worth when they first met with you to discuss the sale of your home? What have comparable homes sold for in the last six months?
If the offer is close to the original list price your Realtor suggested, and is similar to what other homes have sold for in your area, that price might be the best you can reasonably expect.
How long has your home been on the market?
If the home has been on the market for over a month without any offers, it could be the only one you get for a long while.
Will that offer net you enough money to achieve your financial goals? Will it satisfy your timeline for moving?
If it is sufficient for you to reach your financial goals and it works with your timeline there is no real reason reject the offer.
Deciding to reject the first offer means later you might be accepting a lower offer or taking your home off the market. If you want to sell your home quickly and for the most money, accept that first offer.
John Jennings, III
John Jennings, III is a licensed Realtor® who works for Mid State Realty in Coalinga, CA. For more articles like this one go to johnjenningsrealtor.com. John can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and (559) 970-4312.