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What are a buyer’s options when their offer is rejected?

February 13, 2019

Imagine that you’ve been hunting for months for that special Greenwich home. After touring numerous for-sale homes with your agent, you find the perfect home, formulate an offer and submit it.

But then you get word that your offer has been rejected. You may be running out of time and patience, and you may worry that you won’t find another home as nice as the one you’ve already set your sights on. What do you do?

The first thing is to find out why the offer was rejected. The buyer’s agent can inquire about the circumstances of the bid through the seller’s agent, asking questions, such as:

Was my client the only bidder, or is it a multiple-bid situation?

How much time is there to submit a revised offer?

Was the offer rejected based on price, or did other financial-related issues play a role?

Did qualitative elements factor into the decision, such as contingencies, closing deadlines, title or survey issues?

Based on the answers to these and other questions — and assuming the seller is open to receiving a revised offer — the hopeful buyer should be ready to respond thoroughly and promptly; to offer an increased price, which may involve increasing the equity contribution, and waive or adjust certain contingencies in the bid.

Inspection contingencies often play an important role in how an offer is perceived, because they can create time delays or financial uncertainty for the seller. Also, is the buyer prepared to waive what the seller deems to be a nuisance, such as minor repairs?

It is not uncommon for a rejected bidder to end up as the ultimate buyer, because the original first-place bidder either backed out, their financing didn’t come through or was viewed by the seller as difficult or unreasonable.

So don’t get discouraged if your initial offer is rejected. You still may have many options, besides increasing your offer price, to help you buy that home.

Cynthia De Riemer,

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Old Greenwich office, (203) 637-4581 office, (203) 918-1523 cell, cynthia.deriemer@cbmoves.com

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