No reply from the agent

16 Replies

A couple of weeks ago I went to look at a distressed property that needed a fair amount of work to get it to be rent ready. Needed an a/c unit, finish walls, install appliances (new appliances came in the deal, just needed install), general landscaping, etc. No major renovations that I could see on the initial walkthrough. My plan was to make an offer and during the inspection period get a contractor to give me a firm estimate on the cost of the work needing to be completed. I emailed my offer to the agent for this off-market property and included some of the comps I used to get to my offer price. They were asking $120k, I had seen that there was a price reduction from another agent for the same property to $115k. According to them the ARV was going to be about $160k. I did some research and saw the comps they were using and the rehab would have to be much more than what their estimates were. Anyways, I email my offer of $85k to the original agent and still have not heard back. Is this a normal thing to have happen? I didn't really expect my offer to be accepted but I do expect some sort of responce, either a counter offer or a thanks for playing but no. Is this just a bad agent?

Well, not sure why you have any agents in an “off market” deal, but as a listing agent we frequently didn’t respond to low ball all.

That's a pretty low offer on a house listed for $120,000. While it's not a bad thing to shoot off lowballs, some agents won't get back to you (even though they should). So the agent is probably just declining your offer without a counter. I would reach out again to make sure, but it doesn't sound like they're interested.

Alex since it is a distressed property there are probably several investors popping off similar low-ball offers for some time... probably before the house even went on the market. My rentals cause me to get phone calls and mail from investors on a daily basis. I have no intention of ever selling, but they come in constantly because the houses are slightly older. You'll probably have to come up on price a little to beat the pack. 

... but I could be wrong. It's how things are in my neck of the woods right now. 

As an agent, don't you have a legal responsibility to submit all offers to the owner?  Then it would be the owners decision to reject the offer.  

Originally posted by @Alex Verdugo :

As an agent, don't you have a legal responsibility to submit all offers to the owner?  Then it would be the owners decision to reject the offer.  

You are correct. An agent has to submit all offers to the seller unless specifically directed not to in writing.

If the agent has it in writing not to submit offers below a certain price then the agent should definitely still tell you. It's still an offer, you may come up on it, maybe the seller will reconsider down the line if they don't get the offer they're looking for, etc. The agent should not just ignore you. I would hammer call the agent, call from different numbers, etc. until they finally answer and then just be nice about it. The no response at all thing should not fly.

What do you think ARV is, what do you think repairs are? I don't know a whole lot about the Tucson market but if it's an actual single family house that seems very low.

In my market you will get blackballed pretty quick for throwing out a bunch of lowballs like that. Most of the time we dont get a response for lowballs in my market, exception being to thank us for wasting the list agents time. Avg sale price around here is something like 96% of list price, so you can understand why 66% lowball offers dont get replies.

Hey Alex, in Tucson even properties in need of rehab tend to sell within 96% of asking price. Coming in that low he/she probably ran it and 5 other low balls by the client and they rejected them all. Not everyone is good at getting back to people with rejected offers, especially if they're unrepresented. If you're reping yourself you'll want to call from time to time to check in on the status of your offer. 

@Alex Verdugo It’s common courtesy and proper for the LA to at least respond with a “pass” email. If you are using an agent to submit an offer, get a representation agreement. They will place your best interest above their own, and actually answer the phone when you call.

The professional response from an agent would be a short, professional rejection so you at least know they received the offer. You've offered them 30% below asking. If you're going to low-ball like that, you need to justify the low-ball offer or be prepared for them to ignore you.

@Alex Verdugo Are you sure you are dealing with the agent for the property and not the actual owner? It is a little confusing that you are dealing with an agent for an off market deal. 

If this is an agent should they respond back and say the owner isn't considering your offer? Probably, but in reality you can't make them respond. Your options are to increase your offer to get a response, move on and revisit later after the deal sits longer, or try to figure out another way to get the owner to consider your offer.

Originally posted by @Alex Verdugo :

As an agent, don't you have a legal responsibility to submit all offers to the owner?  Then it would be the owners decision to reject the offer.  

The listing agent is legally required to submit all offers to the seller - unless the seller has directed them not to submit anything below X. (I did this after I got a couple of ridiculously low offers as the seller.) 

While they are required to submit to the seller, they are not required to respond to you. As others have said, it would be courteous to do so. I always respond, even just to tell them to increase their bid. 

They are basically telling you NO we are not interested and if you resubmit with something higher we will respond.  Real estate can be emotional and this is a normal response from a seller who gets low-balled.  Whats the point of responding if they have other offers or your price is too low to even close the gap. 

@Alex Verdugo , i'm with @Michael Noto on this one. How do you know you reached the correct person? You stated it's off-market, so how did you find out about it? There's an agent who reduced the price, yet you sent your offer to another agent. Unless they're with the same broker, one of them isn't the listing agent. And if it's not listed, it's possible that neither is the listing agent. Find either the owner or the correct representative. Contrary to what others have written, there's nothing wrong with a low-ball offer - provided you can justify your offer with legitimate rehab and/or ARV numbers.

@Alex Verdugo

Was this a contract offer or just an email? Agents have to present written offers but do not need to respond.

This must be your first deal if you don't know what's going on.