Having been with me during all 20 of my years in real estate, my husband’s favorite lesson learned is how “your first offer is always your best.” He has seen it over and over again with my clients through the years, and he will discuss it with anyone that will listen. The truth is, your first offer really is almost always your best. When a new listing comes on the market, the first people who are going to call you to see it are the ones that have been out there actively looking for a while and are aware of the new listing popping up. They are the most anxious to see new listings because they’ve seen what’s out there, they know what else is available, and they understand the market having seen everything. They don’t have to look at your house and then go see 20 others – they’ve already done that. So they’ve done their homework and if your house is priced properly, they will be excited to come across yours! That excitement is natural at the onset of a new listing.
While sellers sometimes don’t feel like that first offer is exactly what they wanted, it’s almost always the best offer you will see. It also often comes relatively easily, making the seller believe if it was this easy the first time, we’ll just replace that buyer. My advice to my clients is never to quit on your first offer until you’ve tried as hard as you can to make it work, because almost every time, this is the buyer most ready to do something. But it doesn’t just stop once the offer has been accepted. I have seen too many times that a buyer and seller finally get under contract and then have unexpected things show up on the inspections. The buyer asks the seller for a credit, and the seller says no and the home goes back on the market. Now, that seller must disclose any of these inspection problems to everyone else that looks at their house, and future offers come in at a lower price.
Obviously this is not foolproof and there are exceptions to the rule, but in all the years I’ve been in this business, it has proven to be true more often than not. Respect that first offer, and don’t hold out for less!