How to Handle a Counter Offer in a Multiple Offer Situation

How to Handle a Counter Offer in a Multiple Offer Situation

If you are lucky enough to get a counter offer in a multiple offer situation, you really want to accept it unless there is something major that you can’t live with.

You have to keep in mind a counter offer can be withdrawn at anytime. It might have a response required within 24 to 48 hours, but at anytime and without warning the seller can withdraw that counter offer and accept another offer. Once both parties have signed the counter offer, then it is binding and you are in escrow, but until that time the seller can withdraw as desired.

So if you are OK with the price but there are some minor things you would like to change we suggest not changing them and just living with those minor things.

Sometimes small things can be negotiated during the escrow process. For example, say you wanted a 15 day inspection period, but they countered with a 10 day inspection period. Well 8 to 9 days into the inspection if you still need more time you can let the seller know. We have found that sellers do not want to fall out of escrow, so while they were reluctant to allow 15 days prior to going into escrow, they would probably OK a 5 day extension rather than falling out of escrow and having to start again. Falling out of escrow has a stigma about it, buyers will wonder what went wrong, so sellers prefer to stay in escrow and close if at all possible.

So keep this in mind if you are in a multiple offer situation and receive a counter offer. If possible sign it right away, get into escrow, and if a few minor details need to be discussed once in escrow that is OK.