Choosing Between Multiple House Offers: Should You Always Take The Highest Priced Offer When You’re Selling Your Home?

If you’re thinking about selling your first home in Seattle, WA or the surrounding area, you might have heard that our strong market often leads to multiple offers and you may find yourself choosing between multiple house offers. When you’re fortunate enough to be in this situation, does it make sense to just take the highest offer? What other factors should be considered when handling a multiple-offer situation?

Multiple Offers On Your Seattle, WA Home For Sale?  Which Offer Should You Accept?  Is Highest Best?

I’m Emily Cressey, a real estate broker with HomePro Associates at HomeSmart in Seattle and I’ll break down some key things to think about besides that offer price when you find reviewing multiple offers and choosing between multiple house offers. 

NUMER ONE: First on the list is the closing date.

Does that date match up with your desired timeframe? Or will you be homeless for a few weeks while you wait for your next house to close? How important is that date to you? 

NUMBER TWO: What type of financing does the buyer have? Are they offering cash or getting a loan? Did you know the type of loan needs to be taken into account based upon the condition of your home and other contributing factors?  Certain loan types have stricter appraisal requirements than others. Imagine if you found yourself in a situation where you’re now required to make a $10,000 repair or replacement or the buyer’s lender says, “Nope! We’re not funding this loan.”

NUMBER THREE: Are they offering to bring additional cash to the table if their appraisal is not high enough to justify the purchase price of the home? 

In a hot market like this, EVERYONE is offering over asking price. Does that mean that you will actually receive that price? NOT NECESSARILY!  Not if you potentially accept the wrong offer or don’t counter out certain items in the contract.  You have to plan for what to do (and get it in writing) in the event that the home does not appraise for the price you’ve agreed upon.

NUMBER FOUR: How about the inspection contingency? Most buyers will want an inspection on their new home before moving in. Truthfully it’s a great way to protect themselves from unforeseen circumstances. However, again, we’re in a market so hot that we’re seeing plenty of buyers waiving their inspection contingency.  They’re waving it Bye-Bye!  You can make this easier for them if you provide a home inspection for all the buyers to look at before making offers.

Hypothetical Multiple-Offer Scenario – Which Buyers’ Offer Would You Select?

Let's Get Your Home Sold WIth Multiple Offers On Your House
Let’s Get Your Home Sold With Multiple Offers On Your House

So, let’s go back to our original question – why would you accept an offer that is $10K over asking price instead of the one offering $20K over asking price. When you’re choosing between multiple house offers, it can be tempting to just take the one with the biggest number net to you and run with it. But this is not always the wisest choice. 

Let’s Say The High-Priced Buyers, The Joneses make you an offer to buy your home for $20,000 you’re your asking price, but the Joneses are requesting an inspection, need 60 days to close, want to move into the home before they buy it, and only have $2,000 earnest money.   Not a super-strong offer, despite the good price.

Now, let’s look at your second offer, we’ll call these buyers the “Smart-Smiths”:

The Smart Smiths offer only $10,000 above asking price but they are waiving their inspections (which means they are not having inspections), they’re closing in 10 days, and they’re offering you $50,000 in non-refundable earnest money.  This may be a stronger offer – due to the likelihood of the closing going smoothly…  at least it’s something to consider, right? 

Plus, you may even walk away with more because if the Joneses do an inspection and find a problem, they may end up asking for you to pay for those repairs.  Or worse, they could get scared off and decide to cancel the deal and just walk away.

When It’s Your House, You Get To Decide!

When you’re selling your home, you’ll be in the driver’s seat and we’ll talk through the pros and cons of all the offers you receive.

choosing between multiple house offers
Let’s talk about what’s most important to you, so you can sell your home in a way that you find most beneficial.

These are just few things to think about when you’re reviewing multiple offers. Having a detail oriented real estate agent like me in your corner to help you comb through the fine print details of multiple contracts will stop your head from spinning, and we will help you get the most money for your home as well as the best terms to increase the likelihood of a quick, easy closing.

To find out some other reasons that the highest-priced offer may not always be the best choice for you when selling your home, hit that contact below!  I’m Emily Cressey with HomePro Associates at HomeSmart in Seattle and I’m here to help you have a fun, empowered and informed real estate experience by guiding you every step of the way. Talk to you soon!

Emily Cressey

Emily Cressey is a real estate broker residing in Lake Forest Park, WA who services the Greater Seattle area including Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace, Brier, Lynnwood, Kenmore, Bothell and Edmonds, WA.

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