What IS a Multiple Offer Situation?

 

When the market is hot--like Ottawa’s is right now--competition for properties is tight and multiple offer scenarios becomes more common. A multiple offer situation is just what it sounds like: one seller receives offers from several potential buyers. Today I’m going to give you a picture of what the scenario looks like for both buyers and sellers.

 

As A Seller

From a seller’s perspective, the multiple offer situation can look like a feast if you have a cool head under pressure, and overwhelming if you don’t. Luckily, if you trust and work well with your Realtor you can come out on top! Once your Realtor has told you that multiple offers have been presented, you’ll have a chance to consider each one in the order they are received. You have three options for how to deal with each offer: accept, reject, or counter. You aren’t obligated to accept or counter any offer, but if you receive two that fully meet the terms written in your listing contract, you may decide to accept one and have your Realtor notify the agent who presented your second choice that you would be willing to accept it as a backup if your first choice collapses.

When you look at an offer, your eye will probably zero in on the highest price first. But money isn’t everything when considering offers. Keep in mind:

  • Conditions and contingencies: Fewer conditions will give the buyer fewer chances to back out of a deal.
  • Closing dates: When do you want to move--in weeks or in months? If you’re eager to move soon and have numerous offers, the one prepared to close quickly might be the most attractive.

 

As A Buyer

Imagine that you’ve just found your dream home--and your realtor informs you that several other house hunters feel the same way about the same home.

First you’ll write up your own best offer; you may not get a second chance, so keep in mind that the fewer terms and conditions you include, the better it will look to the seller.

Under Ontario law, a seller’s representative can only give you three pieces of information when you are competing in a multiple offer situation:

  • The number of offers that have been submitted.
  • Whether any of the buyers are represented by the same brokerage as the seller.
  • Whether the seller’s brokerage has an agreement to reduce their commission for buyers who are represented by a certain brokerage.

You won’t know how much other buyers are offering, or the terms/conditions they’ve included in their offers. If your offer is countered, you will need to act quickly to respond, since the seller might decide to rescind and accept another offer in the interim. If your offer is rejected, you can make a backup offer in the event that the accepted offer breaks down.

Have more questions about presenting or receiving multiple offers? Ready to list your own property, or start your home search? Get in touch with us today--by phone, email, or live chat!

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