Real Estate Buyers on a Log

What Sets Real Estate Buyers Apart?

What compels a seller to accept one offer over another besides dollars and cents? Putting aside the black and white aspect of a business decision based solely on numbers, image that you’re in a position where the offer you are placing on a home finds competition.

We’ve had a brisk buying spell and there is serious competition in certain neighborhoods and in entry level price housing. Multiple offers are not only possible but probable. If you’ve missed out on getting an offer accepted what could or should be done different to make sure your offer stands out?

For the sake of example assume there are two offers that arrive for the same property. Both offers are on the same boiler plate contract, offering to pay full list price in cash, close at the seller’s convenience, with nearly the same dollar figure escrow deposit. What is the “tie breaker” in a situation like that?

The listing agent makes a call to both parties who placed the offers advising that there are multiple offers on the property and the seller is asking for proof of funds and everyone’s highest and best offer.

Neck and neck the letters from each of the prospective purchaser’s financial institutions come in proving that the funds are on hand. Naturally, they arrive via email with nothing but the name of the property address in the subject field of the email.

Maybe the seller’s should flip a coin to choose at this point. There is no compelling reason for them to pick either offer and there is certainly nothing remotely endearing that they know about the buyers.

Should you add an enlightening or even emotional aspect to an offer you place on a home? What I mean is after you’re done searching high and low to find a home do you just sign and offer and have it coldly faxed or emailed off to the listing agent or do you make sure the offer gets qualified to the seller?

Would it hurt to let the sellers know exactly why you love the home, why you chose it or what you appreciate the most about it? Could it be of interest to a seller to know that you love their home for the big back yard and that you plan to adopt a golden retriever just like theirs? Could it give a buyer an edge to have it known that they’re scrambling to buy a home because they’re six months pregnant, they’re newlyweds or that they’re retiring to be by their grand children?

The fact of the matter is that someone loses in a multiple offer situation. The Hewlett Packard printer that spits the contract out of the seller’s email isn’t going to warm up that offer any more than how it got sent there.

On top of the actual purchase price, maybe the full investment should include about five minutes worth of time to toss in a cover letter and have the offer presented to the sellers with a shred of human interest, passion or even compassion. When all things are equal, it may actually be the deciding factor that sets it apart from being just another impersonal emailed offer from faceless buyers.


Real Life in Bonita Springs is a project by Chris Griffith dedicated to writing useful blog posts for consumers about the Bonita Springs, Florida area.  Find out what it is really like to live in Bonita Springs, Florida by reading about our fair city. You’ll get the latest in local real estate information, Bonita Springs real estate market reports and a little bit of humor.  If you have topic ideas, feel free to request a story about the idea, after all, this site is just for you.

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