As the Kelowna Real Estate market heats up more homes are going into multiple offer situations. The timelines and pressure can be overwhelming on the parties involved.
A couple of legal points to remember:
- An offer must have all the essential terms of the deal (in real estate at least, PARTIES , PROPERTY, PRICE, DATES/ TIMES);
- Making a counter offer says “NO” to the original deal and proposes a new deal – you cannot later go back to the original deal.
- An offer can be withdrawn anytime after it is offered, but before it is accepted.
- Phantom Offers (false bids used to make situations appears like a multiple offer situations) are contrary to the many Real Estate Board rules (see recent Toronto Star article) .
When faced with multiple written offers a Seller must decided to EITHER:
- Accept ONE offer;
- Reject ALL offers (*if market exposure short – this should be considered);
- Counter ONE offer – inform no other parties; OR
- Delay acceptance (do nothing)
- Wait for more offers;
- Advise one or more Buyers they are in a Competing Offer Situation and request revised offers;
Each of these approaches has risks:
- If you accept immediately you risk a higher offer coming later in time
- If you reject ALL you may have no one return with a new offer
- If you counter only one, you may not achieve the highest “auction price”
- If you delay acceptance, the Buyers may look elsewhere
- If you advise the Buyers of the Competing Offer situation some will get ‘scared off” of the process.
Working closely with an experienced Real Estate Agent in the local market and your Kelowna Real Estate Lawyer early and throughout the process are key components to success.
Blog written by Kelowna Real Estate Lawyer Peter Borszcz.