I was recently reading a discussion on our forums, where someone asked “How can you know for sure if someone is really making another offer? What if this happens…is there anything you can do?” There were some good responses on the forums, but I wanted to share a little story about a situation I recently went through that I thought people would find interesting.
According to one of our members:
2. Never believe anything a Realtor tells you about “other offers”. A place that’s been on the market for a year, with ZERO interest will “magically” receive multiple offers about the time you show an interest. When this happens just tell the agent what my dear wife told one; “I guess we’re not meant to get this house then-but our offer stands AS IS.”
I agree with this advice, but I have to comment here. I was house shopping for my permanent residence back in January here in Denver, when there was over a foot of snow on the ground and I was the only person making tracks anywhere. My wife and I found a great house that we were excited about and placed an offer on it. Now, mind you, I had looked at 30 houses and had not seen one other set of tracks in the snow by these houses, including this one. Our offer was a lowball one (as it should be), and the next day I was told by the agent representing us that it was rejected. I was surprised, asking why the seller hadn’t countered us. The house had been on the market for a while, and it just seemed strange that we’d be flat out rejected.
As it turns out, there was another person interested in the house. Apparently, their agent had a deal with the selling agent that she’d be told if anyone came to see the house. When we made an appointment twice, the selling agent let the other agent and their client know, and they went out and made an offer. I guess they dropped the real estate agent’s feverish pitch that we were making a serious offer and their client’s offer, out of nowhere, was well over asking; this certainly locked in the property. for them.
I think it brings up two interesting thoughts:
- First, never assume that no one else is interested. We had to be the only people to see this place for at least a few weeks due to weather and holidays, yet a magical offer arrived the same day as ours.
- Second, the agent representing the woman who bought the home really must have been pretty good, convincing their buyer to offer so much. In this case, a place with zero interest, suddenly DID have other offers. I’m glad I didn’t win that game!
The house was not worth close to what the buyer paid, and the fear/excitement generated by their agent put them in a bad position, especially in the current real estate marketplace. I’m actually surprised that the loan could have gone through, but then again, we all know that many apraisers will tell you a property is worth whatever you want it to be . . . but that’s another story.
Low and behold, I went on to find a place I liked even more the next day (good thing!) and ended up getting even a better deal then I would have gotten had my offer the day before been accepted!