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What are the laws protecting the offer sheets of perspective buyers?

We put an offer in on a house that had been on the market for 2 months with no activity. After our offer was submitted to the listing agent another offer was submitted within 2 hours. The other offer was accepted over ours. The offer we made was for the full asking price of the home. Unless the other offer was randomly made above the asking price, they were probably informed of our offer and the amount. Is there anything we can do?
  • July 24 2013 - Longview
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Answers (6)

Hi user3709339!!  It is possible that the listing agent already had the listing and was slow with implementing it.  I've seen it happen that way many times.  
But since you say it was 2 hours, then maybe it was something about the offer that did not stand out against the other and it does not have to be money related.  
The seller has the right to select whoever they feel comfortable with.  
It could be the name of the bank, it could be someone with an intimate reason for picking the home like staying within a neighborhood they already reside in.  You just never know.  
Try having your agent ask what it was; but it is not necessarily the listing agent's responsibility to tell you why you were not chosen.  
It all depends on the seller's level of confidentiality.  Some sellers may say, "sure disclose why"or the seller could say "no do not disclose anything".  
  • July 25 2013
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There are none, and there is nothing you can do.

You may consult with an attorney, but to my knowledge, people who write offers really don't have much in the way of "rights," the way I think you mean it. The listing broker represents the Seller, and while I believe that the listing broker has a statutory right to treat All Parties Fairly, at least according to the Agency Booklet, "fairly" is something that a judge might ultimately have to decide.

I might ask my attorney to ask the listing brokers if they contacted any other brokers to solicit that second offer, or if it just appeared on its own. My thinking being, if the listing broker solicited offers, they MAY have had an obligation to re-solicit you, too. Maybe. I'm not an attorney. But that would be "fair," wouldn't it?

  • July 25 2013
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Unless the other offer was randomly made above the asking price...

In this market, it wouldn't be unusual for another offer to come in above list price. Plus there are other factors in an offer to consider. The other offer may have been all cash with a two week closing and no inspection. There could have also been factors in your offer that made the sellers prefer the 2nd offer over the 1st.

Another issue to consider is when a listing agent receives an offer, they will often contact agents who have previously expressed an interest in the property. This is done so the sellers receive the best offer (which isn't always about money). But agents are not supposed to divulge terms of any other received offers.
  • July 24 2013
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It is really depend what was your contingencies...if you was going to take loan... so property appraisal, inspection contingency... Might be other offer was without any contingencies + all cash... With respect.
  • July 24 2013
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Profile picture for nwhome.us
The listing agent represents the seller as is obligated (by law) to do everything in their power to benefit the seller.
1.   Believe it or not every listing agent can give you an example of a property languishing on the market and in one day (within hours) receiving  a number of offers on it. It happens rather frequently.
2.   It is the seller's choice how to respond to offers. The listing agent can consult and recommend but it is the seller's property to sell.
  • July 24 2013
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Unfortunately there is not much you can do but find another home.  The other buyers may have been informed of your full price offer by the listing agent and were willing to come in above, or they may have been offering better terms.  For example, it may have been an all cash offer, or greater down payment, or quicker closing, etc.  There are a lot of factors other than price that determine the strength of an offer. 

Hope everything works out for the best and good luck with your home search! 
  • July 24 2013
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