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How Sellers Should Handle a Bully Offer

Bully Offer: an offer with a “take-it-or-leave-it” type of condition attached to it, usually given prior to the offer date.

A bully offer is made when a potential buyer doesn’t want to have to worry about starting a bidding war on the property and wants to eliminate any competing offers. Maybe it’s the buyer’s dream house, maybe they want to insure that theirs is the only offer the seller will consider, whatever the reason bully offer usually succeeds.

The seller is put in a hard spot for several reasons:

  • Accepting to consider the bully offer changes the offer date immediately and all others can now make competing bids.
  • Bully offers rarely allow enough time for competing offers to be made, because they generally have a short window of time to allow the offer to be accepted. Because all offers need to be presented to the seller, even offers before the offer date, a bully offer that has a limited shelf life and is over asking is usually accepted.

Because of the limited time to accept the bully offer it’s very hard to organize all the other agents, and their buyers, that have seen the property to make competing bids. This limiting of the competition is what the bully bid is meant to do, but closing out competing offers may not be in the best interests of the seller.

Often bully offers have very few conditions attached to the offer.  But it can be hard to determine what surprises the offer has buried in it. It’s very important that any conditions are well understood before accepting the bully offer.

If the bully offer is held off for competing bids, it’s important to consider all offers fully on their merits, not just price. Again, read through the conditions carefully. Any number of stumbling blocks could appear in a cleverly written conditional offer and the high price offered may not materialize if the offer falls through for whatever reason and other potential buyers have been chased away.

Emotions can run high when selling your home and there are many strategies that buyers can pursue to purchase the property on their terms. An experienced World Class Realty Point sales representative can guide you through process, keeping your best interests front and centre.

Contact us to meet with a World Class representative and let’s get you moving!