When you get an offer on your home, your agent will explain to you each point of what the buyers have sent. This includes
not just the offer price, but also what type of financing, any closing cost credits, the amount of the earnest money deposit,
the closing date they have proposed, any inspections they are requesting, as well as additional considerations like a home
sale contingency or post settlement occupancy.
If the offer price is acceptable and you agree with all the additional considerations, you can accept the offer by signing
and dating it, and it becomes a ratified contract. If you want to adjust the sales price or any other facet of the offer, you
can ‘counter’ their offer with edits to the conditions that you would like to change. There could be a series of these back
and forth counter offers until both you and your buyers agree to all terms or decide to withdraw or reject the offer.
When you are in the middle of back and forth negotiations, your agent is your best resource for keeping a perspective on
how each item fits into the overall picture of the offer. Speculating on why a buyer may be requesting something is rarely
helpful; they are trying to get the most favorable deal for the home, just as you are trying to have the most favorable
outcome as a seller. Knowing the current market climate helps have a perspective on whether a buyer is being
unreasonable with any requests. Your agent will be able to guide you through.
Once the offer is ratified, the contingency period will begin for inspections, appraisal, and/or financing and you’ll start
moving towards your closing date for a successful sale.
Buyers will only pay what they believe your home is worth. They respond exclusively to price, location, and condition. What
you paid for the home or the equity you need out of it, aren’t relevant to the buyer. It’s simple, homes in top condition sell
for the most money. If you’re not receiving the offers you’d like, then condition is likely affecting the price. Ask your agent
which repairs and updates would increase your property value the most. After making those changes, then reconsider
your price. You can also counter with a carpet allowance, offer to pay HOA fees, or offer some other concession that will
please the buyer.
Your agent can’t tell you what to ask for your home or what you should accept, but he can tell you what you can do to
improve your negotiating position. Keep in mind that your purchase offer is only binding when you agree to the buyer’s
terms or the buyer agrees to your counteroffer. Every change you or the buyer makes means the other party can walk
away from the deal entirely.
Don’t lose your buyer over a minor sticking point. Keep your eye on the goal – selling your home