Choosing Between Multiple House Offers

You may expect offers from more than one buyer in today's hot market. Here's how to choose a buyer for your house.
Margarette Burnette
Holden Lewis
By Holden Lewis and  Margarette Burnette 
Updated
Edited by Johanna Arnone

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How to handle multiple offers on a house

Not enough homes are for sale to meet demand, and many sellers can expect to receive bids from more than one buyer. It's a nice problem to have, but choosing between multiple house offers can be tricky.

Here's a guide to how to choose a buyer for your house.

Start with price, but don’t end there

The offer with the highest price is going to get your attention, especially if it’s above your asking price. But the highest bidder might not be able to qualify for a mortgage in the amount needed.

So in addition to considering the amount offered, review the terms of the entire contract with your real estate agent or another advisor, such as an attorney. For instance, consider how much cash the buyer plans to put down. A bigger down payment — and a correspondingly lower home loan — will make it more likely that the buyer will qualify for a mortgage.

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Compare contingencies

When buyers make an offer, they'll often include a few conditions that, if not met, allow them to cancel the deal. These contingencies may include getting approved for a mortgage, having the home pass an inspection and making sure the home appraises for a certain amount.

When you’re selling your home, contracts with fewer contingencies are better because there will be fewer chances for the buyer to back out of the deal.

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