Why a Seller Should Always Counter an Offer

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Normally there are two options when an offer is presented on a home. The seller can either accept the offer as presented or counter the offer to terms that are more favorable to the seller. Sometimes though when an offer is considerably lower than the asking price, a seller may feel insulted by the offer and refuse to counter at all. This is a mistake.

Do Not Stop the Negotiating
If a buyer takes the time to write an offer on a home, they are interested. They may want to start the negotiating lower than a seller would like but a seller should never stop the ball from rolling. If a seller refuses to counter an offer citing, “It is too low to even counter”, the buyer may be insulted as well and walk away from the deal. Sometimes buyers like to play the game. Sometimes they want to throw a low ball offer in the first time to see where a seller is at and then they will get reasonable. It is in the seller’s best interest to keep negotiating as long as the buyer is willing to negotiate.

Price Your Home Right
A seller should price their home right to begin with. Buyers are looking at several homes in the same price range so they can tell right away if a home is a good deal or if it is overpriced. If it is marked higher than the current market, the number of showings and potential buyers will be much lower. If a buyer writes an offer, it will likely be lower than the market because they know there are limited prospects looking at the home since it is overpriced. On the other hand, a home priced correctly may have multiple offers on it at one time.

First Offer is Usually Your Best
A seller should try and work with their first offer as much as possible to make it come to fruition. Sellers sometimes feel that since they received one offer, they will receive another offer if this deal does not come together. That is often not the case. Many times a home will sit on the market for months after the first offer dies and the seller will end up selling the home for less than what the first buyer was willing to pay. In addition to the lower sales price, the seller incurred additional months of payments, taxes, insurance, etc.

First 10 Days on the Market are Most Critical
The first ten days a home is on the market is when it will receive the greatest number of showings both online and in person. For this reason, a home that is priced correctly is likely to receive an offer as soon as it is listed for sale. The showings will diminish greatly afterwards so this is something a seller should keep in mind when they put their home on the market.

For all of these reasons, there are only two options for sellers when they receive an offer: Accept or Counter. It is in a seller’s best interest to never stop the ball from rolling!