You Have an Offer on Your Home, Now What?

Gloria Smith

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After all the hard work in putting your house up for sale and in attracting/accommodating potential buyers (with the help of a realtor, at the most), an offer or a series of offers finally comes in.

This is the time when your decision making will be put into real test as this portion of the sale process is the most mentally tough on almost all sellers. Unlike the earlier stages wherein it is more physically stressful, deciding on offers will determine the success of a real estate transaction and more importantly, the future of the seller and his/her family.

If you are deciding on multiple offers, it is elementary to compare these offers thoroughly and select the best one. More often than not, the highest bids win, but it is advised to have a backup buyer in case a falling out ensues during the negotiation with the original buyer. Moreover, it is recommended that you use whatever legitimate leverage you have (e. g. sweetening the deal by throwing in furniture and appliances that are already in the house) to entice buyers to agree on a higher price during negotiations.

But even before negotiations, always be sure to check a buyer’s profile first so that you can avoid wasting time on fraudulent or unworthy transactions. Among the buyer information that should be investigated are his/her debt and credit history, cash position, employment status, current income, and other related financial information. Consulting a tax consultant beforehand will also be advantageous because you will be able to identify the tax-related costs attached to the sale of your property, which you can incorporate in your asking price.

During the negotiation and subsequent agreement, it is best to be represented by an attorney who has had substantial experience in handling real estate transactions. The presence of a seasoned attorney will make sure that all terms, conditions, and penalties (if ever there are) are in writing to avoid future mix-ups.

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