In today’s market place, buyers’ offers are expiring left and right. I understand why. Sellers deem that the longer their property is on the market, the more offers they may receive, and the higher the final price may be. This is logical, but precautions need to be taken to ensure that buyers aren’t misled.
Be upfront with all buyers and agents from the moment the property hits the market. If it is known that offers won’t be presented for 7 days, then disclosure that. This should be disclosed in the agent remarks and in any communications with prospective buyers or agents.
Simply: “Offers will be presented on March 7, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. No offers will be accepted after 3:00 p.m. on March 7.”
Then stick to that. This gives buyers the opportunity to submit their offer on the last day or anytime at their leisure. Try to stick to the date and definitely don’t move it up, as some may have held their offers for the last day.
If there is no set time, then all offers should be responded to as soon as possible. Waiting or “shopping” for other offers without an upfront disclosure is damaging to the reputation of the seller and listing agent. It also frustrates buyers and buyer’s agents and lessens the professionalism in the industry.
Communicate with everyone. If there are multiple offers, be upfront with everyone. If not time was set and the seller wants to set one, then give all buyers that knowledge as soon as possible.