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Old 12-22-2012, 08:01 AM
 
Location: DFW - Coppell / Las Colinas
29,637 posts, read 34,145,337 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manderly6 View Post
You should fire yourself. Otherwise you are never going to purchase a house.
Or take the advice of their agent.
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Old 12-22-2012, 08:02 AM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 38,001,996 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakin View Post
Or take the advice of their agent.
That's what I said.
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Old 12-22-2012, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Verde Valley
3,941 posts, read 8,534,366 times
Reputation: 3252
No you should not fire your agent, you should learn how the real estate market works. A verbal offer is 100% meaningless, there's a saying that a verbal offer is worth no more than the paper it's written on.

If you notice how lengthy a real estate offer is you will soon see that there is SO much more to an offer than a price. If you offer a certain amount of money they are so many other factors and there is no way a seller can remember everything you said verbally, so if this were legal, there is huge room for misunderstanding.

Get real and give a witten offer (with a limited time - which they all have by the way) and get yourself a house!
the
Quote:
Originally Posted by antrek View Post
I'm a first-time buyer, and the process seems weird. First, my agent said that just a mortgage pre-qualification won't do, so I got a pre-approval. OK, that I can understand - seller's won't sign a contract if they have doubts the buyer can pay.

But now it seems I can't even properly negotiate - I found three houses that I like, and offered, verbally, about 10% below listing price for each of them, which does not seem to be low-balling. But in all cases, the response was "present a written offer, then we will talk". Why is that? I understand that in "a sellers' market" sellers want to have several written offers to choose from. But now, with all the properties I'm interested in having been listed for 9+ months, why should I spend weeks "negotiating" only one of them?

Am I missing something? Why can't buyers extend several non-binding offers and see which seller accepts?
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:10 AM
 
2,623 posts, read 4,312,992 times
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It's not a contract unless both parties have signed. Why are you not willing to make the commitment to a written offer, yet you believe you are ready for the commitment of owning a home with a mortgage?

As others have said it is quite common to put a time limit for the seller to accept or reject your offer. The trick is to give them enough time to think it over without feeling pressured (e.g., 24+ hours) but not give them so much time that you are uncomfortable (e.g., a week). By the way, when we bought our current house (as the housing bubble was heating up and lots of bidding wars were going on), our agent (who was not very good in many ways) was adamant that we should NOT put in a time deadline. Fortunately it worked out reasonably well, but if I had it to do over again, we would have told her we would not place any offers with indefinite times for seller response. So if your agent tells you this, say you insist on time period.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Gilbert - Val Vista Lakes
6,069 posts, read 12,602,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ACWhite View Post
It's not a contract unless both parties have signed. Why are you not willing to make the commitment to a written offer, yet you believe you are ready for the commitment of owning a home with a mortgage?

As others have said it is quite common to put a time limit for the seller to accept or reject your offer. The trick is to give them enough time to think it over without feeling pressured (e.g., 24+ hours) but not give them so much time that you are uncomfortable (e.g., a week). By the way, when we bought our current house (as the housing bubble was heating up and lots of bidding wars were going on), our agent (who was not very good in many ways) was adamant that we should NOT put in a time deadline. Fortunately it worked out reasonably well, but if I had it to do over again, we would have told her we would not place any offers with indefinite times for seller response. So if your agent tells you this, say you insist on time period.
The experienced agent, who has worked both buyers markets and sellers markets will know the strategies that are likely to work best.

In cases where there are multiple offers on homes, the sellers may ignore the time deadlines because they're getting other offers in, and it's to their advantage to wait. They know that if the buyer wants the house, and the seller responds with an acceptance after the deadline, that the buyer will probably agree to extend the deadline. If not, then they'll go to the next buyer.

On the other hand, if the seller has two identical offers, one with a deadline that has passed, and the other with an open deadline, the seller will likely chose the one with the open deadline.

So in these multiple offer instances, the deadline means little because the offer, with or without a deadline, is only good until withdrawn by the buyer anyway, and all it takes to withdraw an offer is to have the agent email an offer withdrawal notice to the listing agent.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:05 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
20,762 posts, read 25,234,582 times
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A verbal offer is not an offer. And, hey, you say yourself you want to give verbal offers on 3 different houses. Are you hoping to buy all three of them? No? Then your verbal offer is just kicking tires and you have no intention to buy.

The terms of the offer are just as important as the price. I might take a smaller price for a really clean offer. Some one with all cash will get a better price than someone who needs a mortgage and the guy who must sell his own house first is probably going to get turned down, no matter how much he is offering.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:08 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
20,762 posts, read 25,234,582 times
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Adding: do not make any offers at all until you have narrowed the field down to the very house you wish to purchase. You want that house, so that is the point where you enter into negotiations.

I would not be offended by an offer at 10% below asking. I don't have to accept that price and we can start negotiating from that point. If you must have 10% off and the seller doesn't like it, he will turn you down and you will go and find something else.

Don't get fixated on getting 10% off. It's no deal to get 10% off a house that is priced 10's of thousands over it's fair market value and to secure a nice house that has been price low to sell fast, you might have to pay over the asking price.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Columbia, SC
8,811 posts, read 17,326,176 times
Reputation: 6143
Your agent and the agents on the board have given you excellent advice. When I get a verbal offer when representing a seller I tell them to put it in writing and we'll take a look at it. While Mike J already addressed it nobody is asking you to sign a contract in minutes. You already said you want to offer 10% less than asking price so you've already made a decision.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:31 AM
 
397 posts, read 487,928 times
Reputation: 210
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakin View Post
And yes.... 10% below list in most of DFW would not be a serious offer. Most sellers would not consider and may not even counter.
Quote:
Originally Posted by FalconheadWest View Post
And have you looked at the comparable sales in your market? 10% below asking would be a huge insult in my market, where most houses are selling at 98%+ of asking price.


You can not make a blanket statement that 10% below asking is too much or too little, regardless of the market.

You could be in a red hot sellers market and have an agent grossly overprice a home. In this case, offering 10% below asking may be too generous.

On the flip side, you could be in solid buyers market and have a house that is priced well below "market value". In this case an offer 5% below asking may be too low.

As for homes commanding 98% of asking price, this is a deceptive # and is often used by agents and sellers to justify getting 98% of their asking price. Homes often have price reductions and there can be a big difference between % of the final asking price and the % below the initial asking price.

Falcon, are homes in your area going for 98% of their initial price? I doubt it!

Regarding time limits on purchase contracts, as long as the seller has not signed the contract, a buyer can always withdraw their offer with or without time a deadline in the contract.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Salem, OR
13,707 posts, read 31,310,100 times
Reputation: 12049
Out here we give 48 hours to respond to an offer. Only crazy people would extend an offer with no expiration date.

You can do multiple buyer offers, and I have had clients do it. You need an attorney to craft an addendum to each contract regarding the fact that the buyer is engaging in multiple negotiations at once. This is NOT a clause that an agent should write themselves. Each time, the sellers rejected their offers and told them to come back when they were ready to negotiate one on one.
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