In Real Estate every seller should have the goal of selling their home to the buyer who submits the highest offer possible.
Sometimes even though a buyer may accept one offer, they may receive a second offer that’s higher than the first, and the BIG question is can a seller accept that second offer? The answer to this question is: it depends on.
If The Home Is Already In Escrow
In California if the seller has already signed a purchase contract with the buyer, and escrow is moving along normally, then the seller cannot accept a second higher offer on their home but, let’s say that the buyer fails to waive their contingencies within the standard 17 days in California, or something comes up during the home inspection / appraisal, that they consider to be “deal breakers” and they no longer wish to purchase the home, in either situation the seller can cancel escrow, release the buyer’s deposit, and should feel free to accept the higher offer on their home.
The Backup Offer
Although a seller is not allowed to accept the second higher offer on their home when they are in escrow most agents will view the second offer as a “backup offer” that they will keep in mind if the escrow timeline isn’t met or the buyer finds something that they consider to be unacceptable with the home that comes up during appraisal.
The seller should never want to purposely break their selling contract because they will effectively owe the selling broker their commission and they could also face a potential lawsuit as well but if their contract has contingencies like the buyer obtaining a mortgage, or the seller buying another home, and those contingencies are not met, then the seller will be free to accept the second offer.
The Second Offer Is Not Guaranteed
Sadly, many sellers who get enticed with a second higher offer on their homes don’t realize that even though a second higher offer is on the table there’s no guarantee that the second offer would close anyway. The bank appraisal may come in low, or inspection reports could kill the sale, causing the seller to renegotiate their asking price, and the buyer face having to start all over again with marketing their home that’s why it pays to hire the most qualified Realtor® so you can have confidence that the first offer you accept is the highest offer.
List Your Home with Fred Sed Realty
At Fred Sed Realty you will never have to worry about accepting a second higher offer because the first offer we accept will always be the very best offer. Get started with listing your home by calling us at (800) 921-9231 or connect with us online through our website.