Facing a Highest and Best Offer when Buying Real Estate

When you’re buying a new home in Murphy NC, the excitement of finding the one you want to buy can be truly exhilarating. Anytime you buy a home, you have to write up the contract and submit it to the seller. Being notified there are multiple offers on a home can be somewhat overwhelming, especially if you want to buy the home and beat out other potential purchasers.

When a seller receives multiple offers, they have 2+ offers on one property. I’ve seen 11 total offers on one property we had listed and represented several buyers where there were 5+ offers. A seller has several different options of how they can respond to the offers:

  1. They can choose to accept or negotiate with one of any of the offers.
  2. They can also go to all parties who have submitted an offer and request for each party to provide their “highest and best offer” by certain deadline. This is very common, especially if you are purchasing a foreclosure. I personally find this option the most fair because it allows every interested party to put their best foot forward.

Highest and Best OfferPut simply, highest and best offer is exactly that. You want to submit your best offer that you’re willing to present on the house. The BEST refers to terms and contingencies. In the eyes of the seller, they want the offer with the least contingencies and potential pitfalls. The HIGHEST refers to the highest purchase price you’re willing to pay. In the event your house were to sell for one dollar more than you offered, you lost out over one dollar. I always recommend to buyers submit an offer that is as high as they are willing to go and if they lost it for one more dollar, they would have NO regrets. I’ve had many people make their highest offer and then want to change it after the deadline – you almost never get than second chance. Don’t be one of those folks – put your best foot forward right away!

Here are some neat tricks to consider when determining what your highest and best offer is going to be if you find yourself in that situation.

  • Odd dollar amounts can work. I had one that the buyer offer something odd like $145,342.01. Guess what – they got it. Sometimes the smallest amount can make a difference.
  • Always have proof of funds (evidence of your money. This applies to downpayment amounts AND to all cash offers).
  • The purchase price can routinely over asking price for the hottest properties. As inventory dwindles, this can happen more and more.
  • If you’re getting a loan, get pre-qualified with a reputable lender. A loan letter from some fly-by-night internet operation will not have anywhere near the credibility a reliable, local lender has. It wouldn’t even be a bad idea to find out if the bank or listing agent has a lender they prefer to give you that “edge.”
  • Reasonable/quick inspection periods. Don’t ask for long periods of inspection times. Rarely will more than 5-10 days be considered.
  • Cash is king and can often win out over an equal or even higher offer that requires a loan. You may not have this option so you’ll have to make your offer shine in other areas. Believe it or not, cash is very common (especially in multiple offer situations) so just because you have cash doesn’t mean you’ll get the property or that you shouldn’t make it more compelling in other areas.
  • Closing dates should generally be as early as possible. Banks want the houses (assets as they call them) off their books ASAP. Make your offer scheduled to close as soon as you can make it happen.

If you’re in this position, good luck! It can be exciting, emotionally draining, and so many other emotions. The main thing is to lean on your Realtor for help. Every situation is different so be sure to utilize their insight and advice. We hope you get your property 🙂

The Poltrock Team – REMAX of Murphy NC – www.MyMurphy.com – JohnPoltrock@gmail.com – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team