Delaware County, Pennsylvania Real Estate Blog

17 Ways Buyers can get their Offer Rejected by the Seller!

If you are looking to buy a house as a primary residence or for investment, be sure to take a look at this post written by Fred Griffin .  He points out the many reasons why an offer can be rejected by a seller. 

Thank you Fred for listing these reasons.

      You found your Perfect House!  After looking at many, many houses, you have found exactly the home that you were looking for.  You and your Agent sit down to write the offer... but then you make requests and demands that will get your offer Rejected by the Seller!


Offer Rejected


17 Ways to Get Your Offer Rejected



1.   Your Offer Price is too Low!

      The price is the first thing that a Seller looks at when they are presented with an offer.  If the house was "priced right", and you come in way below that asking price, there is a good chance that your offer will get thrown in the trash.  If you believe that your Offer Price is justified, have your Agent show some recent comparable sales prices to the Seller.


2.   You Don't Understand your Local Real Estate Market

     The National News presents an unrealistic picture of the Real Estate Market.  Real Estate is LOCAL.  I can put you in a comfortable 3 bedroom 2 bathroom house with a 2 car garage for less than $200,000 in Tallahassee, Florida.  But try offering a price like that in a lot of other cities.  You will be laughed to scorn. 

     Also, you need to know whether your town is a Seller's Market, a Buyer's Market, or "neutral".  Ask your Agent for the data on YOUR town, then act accordingly.


3.   Not Understanding the Motivation of the Seller

     A good Agent can find out WHY the Seller has put the house up for sale (not always; some Sellers play it close to the vest).  Did the Seller take a job out of town, and needs to sell quickly?  Is the Seller an REO (Bank Owned Property)?  Is it a court-ordered Divorce Sale?  Or is the Seller just testing the water, and has little or no motivation to sell?


4.  Not having a Pre-Approval Letter or Proof of Funds.

     Do you really expect a Seller to take their house off the Market, while you go to the Bank to see if you can get a loan?  Present your proof-of-ability documents with your offer.


5.  Asking the Seller to Pay All Closing Costs

     You offered a good price... but then you want the Seller to pay $$$ thousands of dollars in costs!  That is effectively lowering the price.

Offer - Sellers Pays All Closing Costs


6.  Not Putting Up a Realistic Deposit

     In Florida, there is no monetary deposit required to create a binding contract.  But go ahead and make an offer with "Zero" on the line for earnest money deposit.  Very few Sellers are going to accept such an Offer!

     Or maybe you wrote in $500 or some other paltry sum.  The strength of your Offer is reflected in the Deposit.  It shows how serious you are!  Even with a 100% Financed Loan like USDA Rural or VA, you should still put up a legitimate deposit.


7.  Unreasonable Contingencies.

     Just about every Offer (excepting cash) contains a Financing Contingency.  Most Offers contain Inspection Contingencies.  But what about contingencies like, "Buyer's Home Must Sell First", or "Subject to Approval by Buyer's Father-in-Law", or "Seller Agrees to Fill in the Swimming Pool"?  Those conditions/contingencies can be detrimental to your Offer!


8.  Demanding Too Much Personal Property.

     The Seller plans to leave the light fixtures, the draperies, and the kitchen appliances.  Your Offer demands the Flat Screen TV, the Pool Table, and the China in the China Cabinet.


Offer Rejected over Personal Property Included


9.  Asking for Nickel and Dime Repairs.

     The Inspection report shows that the Water Heater is malfunctioning.  Fine, ask the Seller to repair or replace it.  But what about the minor items on the report that were clearly visibile when you previewed the house?  You can annoy a Seller by making petty demands, and risk having your Offer fall through.

     Likewise, be careful when asking for [any] repairs if the MLS Listing clearly stated, "As Is, Subject to Inspections". 


10.  Closing Date way off in the Future

     The Seller has already moved out.  Your Offer shows a Closing Date several months from now.  What are the odds that the Seller will accept your Offer?


11.  Trying to get a Foreclosure for nothing.

     The days of Banks and Financial Institutions "giving away" REO properties are long gone.  The price of most Foreclosures is based upon the Market Value, minus estimated repair costs.  If your offer is substantially lower than the asking price, it will probably get rejected.


12.  Making an Offer based upon what you learned from a Get Rich Quick Seminar or late night TV Infomercial.

      Kevin Trudeau is in his second year of a 10-year prison sentence.  Don Lapre committed suicide in an Arizona prison a few years ago.  Other "famous" Real Estate TV Hucksters have met similar fates.  Their advice is garbage; ignore it.


13.  Asking a Seller for Early Possession.

     You want to move in two weeks before Closing.  See a Lawyer for legal advice, but this is usually a very dangerous position for a Seller to put himself/herself in.  Most Seller's Agents will advise their Seller to see an Attorney before accepting such an offer.


14.  "Creative Financing"

     Asking a Seller (who has not volunteered) to carry Owner Financing, or asking a Seller to do a Lease Option or Lease Purchase, or a Contract for Deed. 

     This is especially dangerous if you are trying to circumvent a Due on Sale Clause in the Seller's existing mortgage.  You and the Seller should both see an Attorney for legal advice before entering into such an agreement.


15.  Ignoring Requests by the Seller in the MLS

      If the Seller has made specific requests or statements in the MLS regarding time for acceptance, length of time before closing, what personal property does or does not convey, etc. and you ignore those requests, you risk having your Offer rejected.


16.  Not Understanding the Concept of Multiple Offers in a Hot Market.

     If you are in a Market where Multiple Offers are typical, you MUST come in with your Best at the very beginning!  A low-priced, contingency-filled offer will not warrant a second look!


17.  Your Offer is Never Presented; The Seller Never Sees It

     It may be illegal and/or unethical, but sometimes Agents do not present Offers!

    Perhaps the Agent thinks that the Seller will be angry over your Offer, so that Agent does not show it, she pretends it was rejected.

    An unethical Listing Agent has multiple Offers; he only presents the Offers that will net him both sides of the commission!  

     This scenario happened to me several years ago.  The Listing Agent told me that "the Seller got a much higher offer than your Buyer's offer; they didn't even want to counter your offer.  Sorry."

     My Buyer contacted the Seller directly, wanting to know why his Offer was not countered.  The Seller had not seen the Offer!  The Listing Agent had blatantly lied to me that our Offer was rejected without a counter!  That Seller then broke the other Contract (with the Listing Agent's Buyer), and sold the house to my Buyer.  That Agent was dismissed from his company, and faced disciplinary action from the Florida Real Estate Commission.

         It may be up to you to verify that your Offer was presented!



Tallahassee House For Sale



     Each Real Estate Market is different, each Seller and each Property are unique.  But the same principles generally apply.  Your Offer MUST be attractive to the Seller to get Accepted!


Disclaimer:  Nothing in this blog article is to be construed as legal advice, tax advice, or financial advice.  For legal advice see an attorney.   For tax advice or financial advice see a tax attorney, certified public accountant, or other qualified professional.


Frederick Griffin, Licensed Real Estate Broker    Tallahassee, Florida    850-339-4861


 ActiveRain Top Contributor Fred Griffin Tallahassee, Florida Real Estate Blog



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Frederick Griffin, Licensed Real Estate Broker    Tallahassee, Florida    850-339-4861






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Comment balloon 0 commentsGloria Todor • January 12 2015 09:37AM
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