How to Make a Counteroffer When Someone Wants to Buy Your Home

If you’re like many people, you’re ready for offers on your home to start rolling in – but what happens if someone offers you too little for your house?
You can make a counteroffer. Your REALTOR® will guide you through the counteroffer process, but here’s what you need to know.

How to Make a Counteroffer When Someone Wants to Buy Your Home in Ellicott City

Sometimes people make perfect offers – they’re at or above list price and they’re ready to meet all your terms as a seller (such as closing in the right time frame). However, sometimes offers are too low, or they include terms that you, as a seller, don’t want to agree with. In a small handful of cases, an offer is way too low. Commonly known as a low-ball offer, these offers are more than 25 percent below the asking price. For example, if you list your home for $400,000 and a prospective buyer offers you $300,000 or less, that’s a genuine low-ball offer.
When you get an offer you don’t like, you have a couple of options. You can reject the offer entirely, letting the buyer know you’re not even considering it, or you can make a counteroffer. (If you do like a buyer’s offer, you’re free to accept it as-is, too.)
Related: Is Fall 2020 the right time to sell a home in Ellicott City?

Rejecting an Offer

You are free to reject any offer for any legal reason. (Obviously you can’t decline an offer for discriminatory reasons.) If you want to reject an offer, you won’t actually do it yourself; your REALTOR will do it for you.
Related: 5 closing costs to be aware of when you sell your home

Making a Counteroffer

Your REALTOR will handle the counteroffer process for you. Typically, what happens is you and your agent discuss the offer and you determine whether you want to accept, reject or counter it. You can let your agent know why you’re considering a rejection or what you want to counter with. For example, if your home is listed for $299,000 and someone offers you $295,000, you may want to meet in the middle or make other concessions in order to close the deal (like closing sooner or telling the buyer you’re not willing to pay closing costs).
Again, your real estate agent will walk you through the counteroffer process.
Related: Selling a home in Ellicott City? Here’s how your agent will price it

What to Consider During the Counteroffer Process

When you’re thinking about making a counteroffer, remember:

  • Take your emotions out of the equation. From a purely business standpoint, the buyer’s offer might make sense – but rarely does it seem so when you consider that you’re sentimentally attached to your home.
  • Remember your goals when it comes to selling your home. If your goal was to sell quickly or to get a certain amount of money, compare the buyer’s offer to what you originally wanted. If they match – or if they come reasonably close to one another – it may be a good idea to make a few concessions in order to close the deal.
  • Carefully consider the entire offer. Negotiation doesn’t always mean dollar signs. Instead, you can use other pieces of a real estate offer to negotiate.
  • Ask your real estate agent for advice on what you should do (and how you should counter). Your agent will be able to give you guidance based on his extensive experience. And that’s why you hired a real estate agent in the first place, isn’t it?
  • Take a look at homes that are similar to yours on the market right now. Look at the comparative market analysis your REALTOR did for you before you listed your home. Look at homes currently for sale in your market. You can make sure that your home is reasonably and currently priced by doing so – and you may realize that it’s okay to adjust your list price down or accept an offer that may be less than you originally thought you’d get.

Are You Selling a Home in Ellicott City?

If you’re thinking about selling your home in Ellicott City, I can help. Call me at 443-955-1227 or 410-465-5822 to discuss what needs to happen so you can sell quickly and at the right price!
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