Profile picture for DanielWRyan

Making an offer on a house that is pending sale?

Any point in doing this?
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December 31 2010 - US
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Profile picture for BryRob
In my market, people will often make a back up offer. There is no harm I know of in doing so as long as the sale is in an early stage and Mike states.
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December 31 2010
In Utah, there is a specific addendum that allows a buyer to secure the first back up position on a home. It is written to protect the buyer by allowing them to withdraw from back up position, without penalty. 

Many times, particularly in multiple offer situations, I recommend to my clients to take the first back up position instead of "bidding the price up". Especially if their offer was presented first and it was the second or subsequent offers that were increased. A lot of times the first offer falls out because that buyer realizes that they bid the price up emotionally, rather than based on reason.

Being in back up position means that your place in line is secured on that particular home, but there is nothing prohibiting you from continuing your home search where you will be the primary/only offer.
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December 31 2010
Pending what?

Pending inspection?

Pending third party approval?

Pending buyers sale of own property?

The first two, I think I would pass. If a home fails to pass inspection, there might well be issues (although it can always be cold feet). The 2nd pending issue can also be fraught with problems. Third pending issue I would definitely place an offer as there is often language that will force the 1st buyer to pay or play.
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December 31 2010
We don't use the term pending sale here but if I understand the use it means the house is under contract to close soon and means there are no contingencies on it other than maybe financing. Your first offer had a huge contingency, the sale of your current home, and that prevented you from being able to remove the contingency. There is no way the seller can now except your offer over the other offer UNLESS the other offer falls apart or unless that buyer up and walks away. Your only hope is if something falls apart on that other offer and they do all the time so a back up offer in place would be your next move.

I have had buyers offer other buyers, in a primary position, up to $10,000 to walk away from their offer. Luckily for me the buyers (that I was working with) wanted the house so much they did not take the offer which I thought was pretty mean and ugly, but welcome to real estate.

Good luck
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December 31 2010
If you have the time and think that this is the only house for you, it can't hurt presenting a back up offer. You can still look at other houses in the mean time and maybe find something equal to or even better for your family. A back up offer is only as good as the paper it is written on, if the previous deal fell through then you should be the first one they would call, but no guarantees on that either. Like I said it can't hurt anything, don't give them any earnest money on a back up. Your agent should get a copy of the check for their file but will keep in their file for you.
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December 31 2010
It never hurts to have your agent to contact the listing agent to see if a back up offer would be considered. It may not end up as you'd like if the other offer is solid and does close, but you won't know unless you try it. In most cases, back up contingency language, if put into the contract, allows you to continue looking at other homes and you're only obligated if the other deal fails.

Be sure to read all contingency addendum language for back up offers to make sure your goals are addressed.
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December 31 2010
Profile picture for km9
  • km9
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Do whatever you want, but if someone did that to me right now, I'd be pissed because a deal is a deal.
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December 31 2010
Usually if the status is pending instead of backup (in my area), it implies that the seller/agent is confident that the sale will close.

At the minimum, I will call the listing agent and ask if it is worthwhile to put in a backup offer incase their transaction don't close.

If yes and it really is the perfect house for your family, then draft a backup offer that is as solid as a normal offer, but with at least contingencies that allows you to cancel if you put in an offer on a different house or if they stay pended for more than X amount of days.

If there is any doubt that it is the perfect house, I would just inform the listing agent of my interest and would like to be notified immediately if they need to get a new offer.
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December 31 2010
Profile picture for DanielWRyan
Thanks, it is the perfect house for my family. We made a contingent offer on it back in November, that was countered to remove the contingency, which we couldn't do at the time. We now have an accepted offer on our house, but the house we want went to sale pending 3 weeks ago. 
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December 31 2010
Profile picture for scubacuda
This sort of question is like asking a card player, "I had X and Y pocket cards while playing poker, what do I do?" and not giving them any info about your position, chip stack, or nature of the others at the table. 

Overall, I would say do it if it's the ideal house you want.  But you'll definitely want to give more deets and details here if you want a better answer.
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December 31 2010
 
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