The Counter Offer – Negotiation Strategies for Sellers

The Counter Offer – Negotiation Strategies for Sellers

Getting an offer on your home is very exciting. Then you open the offer and realize it’s not what you were expecting and you are wondering what to do next. Answering an offer which is not acceptable is a matter of strategy. Sometimes buyers feel they need to "try" a lower offer. Here are a few of the strategies used by successful listing agents to handle a low offer. 


The most common way to respond to an offer that is not quite right. You can counter at the list price and terms or come down and offer something in between list price and the offer.

Highest and Best

This strategy allows the buyer to revise their offer, should they choose. This is most often used in a multiple offer situation, but works just as well with a single buyer who needs to know their offer isn’t acceptable.

Include Terms in Negotiation

The price is not the only part of an offer which can be negotiated; the terms can also be changed. Think of terms like the sprinkles on the cup cake. It is the good stuff. Thinkgs like post occupancy for the seller, fast inspection periods, larger desposits, faster inspections and great financing. 

Reject the Offer

It depends on many factors on whether rejecting an offer makes sense. If the numbers don't work and it is the best a buyer can offer, then you have no choice but to reject the offer. However I have seen some offers that started out as low balls get to the closing table. If the terms don't work, then rejecting the offer also is a good strategy. Otherwise countering might be a better option as it keeps the conversation going. 

Offers are exciting; consider the options available for counter offers and ensure you negotiate a good deal for your home.

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