The first thing you should do is analyze the offer carefully with your agent. Here’s why. Sellers frequently examine just one or two parts of an offer: price and financing. While these items are important, there may be other areas that can make the offer either more or less attractive. These include: earnest money, down payment, interest ceiling (the highest rate buyers will pay for new financing), closing costs, financing time limit, closing date, type of financing, personal property contained in the offer, and any contingencies related to the offer. By examining the offer with your agent, there are three actions you can take:
First, you can accept the offer as is. If you do this, you have a binding agreement.
Second, if the offer is totally unsatisfactory, you can, of course, reject it altogether. This option closes the door on the offer. Sometimes it’s the right action, but I would suggest the third alternative.
Third, make a counter-offer. If everything is satisfactory except the price, for example, you can ask for more and submit the counter-offer back to the buyers. Or, if there are other elements of the offer you want to counter – say, for example, they want to close in two weeks – you can ask for a month.
Keep in mind that an offer you have in hand will be binding as soon as you’ve signed it. Any changes you make to the offer will require the buyer to initial or sign it again.
If you’re thinking of buying or selling soon, and require competent and caring representation, please call me at 401-595-2956.