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Preemptive Offers: Make Them an Offer They Can't Refuse

What is a Preemptive offer?

Preemptive offers are when a buyer submits their offer prior to the offer date set by a seller.

Why would a seller opt to accept an offer without exposing their property to the full market? To answer this question we're going to examine what makes a strong preemptive offer.

Preemptive Expectations

If a seller is going to consider accepting a preemptive offer they expect it to be as strong as they hope to see in a multiple offer situation. There should be few, if any, contingencies, and an offer price commiserate with market conditions (plus 5% or so). Additionally, the buyer should take into consideration any special needs the seller may have. Have they already purchased another property and are in need of a fast close? Do they need to stay in the house after close for a couple weeks before they can move to their new home? The buyer's agent will work closely with the seller's agent to learn any unique ways to construct an offer that will appeal most strongly to the seller.

No Guarantees

Though a buyer submits a clean, strong preemptive offer, the seller is under no obligation to accept it. A seller may expect that a buyer who loves their home enough to submit a preemptive offer will still be around on the offer date and may choose to let them come back and compete with other buyers for the house. The hope here is that another offer could come in higher, or the preemptive hopefuls may increase their offer in the face of competition. The risk is that there ends up not being as much interest as anticipated and the buyer who submitted a preemptive offer could come back with a reduced offer.

Create Urgency

One way to urge a seller to accept a preemptive offer is to have a serious time-sensitive reason they needed to submit a preemptive offer. Reasons could be that the buyer has another property waiting in the wings that they will move on to should their preemptive offer not be accepted. This is a bit trickier to maneuver, and it does need to be true so this tactic isn't always available. Making an offer appealing to a seller because it suits their needs, not the buyer's, tends to be a better strategy, but if there is a way to add a little extra oomph and urgency, it may not hurt.

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