Antonio & Alexia's Blog


Would you rather entertain "Low-Ball" offers, than no offers at all?

The challenges of this "Buyer's Market," are very unique, with inventory of homes for sale at an all time high, plus banks getting ready to acquire more properties via Foreclosures and then ad them to the list of "For Sale" homes, having an offer is sort of... a privilege, a blessing.

But what if you, Mr. seller, get a "Low-Ball" offer on your house?  Recognizing that an offer is an opening salvo for the beginning of negotiations is critical. Unfortunately, some sellers get right down... offended by a low offer. They refuse to take it seriously and a rejection is the result that kills any chance they could have had of getting to a mutually agreeable compromise with the buyer.

After 23 years of selling real estate full time I have learned to counsel my clients, the sellers to be open minded, especially on this market and to understand the logic of a buyer who makes an offer. Yes, prices are low but don't blame the buyer for trying to get an even better deal. Would YOU Mr. seller do the same if you were in the buyer's shoes? Of course YOU wouldn't!

Engaging the buyer in negociations even with his "Low-Ball" offer, keeps the buyer looking at YOUR house, look at the big picture! If you want to sell the house, there is a reason. Keep the main goal in mind, if you are selling to buy a bigger or smaller house, I recommend you give more than you thought you could give because you will recover all that and more when you switch from Seller to Buyer, you will get even with the next guy!

If you manage to sell your house on this market, consider yourself lucky, a low bid offer could be the key to your future plans being realized sooner than expected. Don't lock yourself into an unreasonable price. Remember, the best price for the house is: "What the buyer is willing to pay and the seller is willing to accept" Now, go ahead and take another look at those... "Low-Ball" offers.


The Realtors In Motion       Antonio & Alexia Cardenas   

                  "The Realtors In Motion" 

         CRS, GRI, E-Pro Certified. SFR (Short Sales, Forclosure Resource) Serving the east shores of the San Francisco Bay, Alameda county: specially the following cities: Castro Valley, San Leandro, San Lorenzo, Hayward, Oakland, Pleasanton & Dublin.

                  Visit us on line at: or call (510) 326-4263

                     Call us, We'll come and TANGO with you!

Comment balloon 20 commentsAntonio & Alexia Cardenas • September 15 2008 12:10AM


Antonio and Alexia:  Oh please... bring me all the low-ball offers you can come up with.  Whenever I take a listing... part of my presentation is preparing the seller for possible low-ball offers... and exactly how to counter them.  So... bring them !

Posted by Karen Anne Stone, Fort Worth Real Estate (New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County) over 11 years ago

Antonio. A small offer is better than none at all. I would take them. Royal..

Posted by Royal Goodman, "We Treat You Like a King" (Royalty Home Solutions) over 11 years ago

Antonio & Alexia,  I always tell my sellers to entertain ALL offers and never, ever say "no I don't want to talk to them again".  You may be turning away the buyer who is really serious about your house if you only would offer a counter offer.

Posted by Sara Homan, Realtor, Homes, Farms & 55+ (Coldwell Banker Ellison Realty 352-209-4044) over 11 years ago

I have seen some offers that are obscenely and maliciously low. It is a deflating thought but we have to work around it. Sometimes, I questioned agents who do this because they could have at least run the comps to show the buyers that those are ridiculous offers. Ultimately, an offer is an offer and we have to find a way to get a compromise.

Posted by Jim Quinn, North Orange County Real Estate (Century 21) over 11 years ago

I found this year Not only Agents but Sellers are willing to negotiate. Every Deal I manged to close took 7 or 8 counter offers. Two years ago I would not have written the offers or taken the offers. It is a different world out there. The sooner all the players realise it the more transactions could close. I look at it if a Buyer & their agent took the trouble to write up an offer we owe them at least a counter offer.

Posted by Endre Barath, Jr., Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) over 11 years ago

I have been saying this for a long time, something on paper is better than nothing to negotiate with!! Let's go out there and make sales! Just have to keep it "real"!!

Posted by Caren Wallace, Portland Caren Real Estate (Premier Property Group LLC) over 11 years ago

any offers is better than no offers, at least you have someone interested and can always work it up

Posted by Penny Swift (Allison James Estates & Homes) over 11 years ago

I entertain all offers and try to have my clients maintain perspective that they can always counter the offers.

Posted by Matthew Zgonc, Realtor, CFS, CVS (Aksland Real Estate) over 11 years ago

What about two low offers? Aren't the buyers trying to tell you something? The first of these two offers being the higher one...Still waiting for the third...

Posted by Lourdes Hoglo REALTOR® Three Village & North Shore Suffolk Co. Long Island (Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 11 years ago

Agreed whole heartedly !  Many buyers want to start low and than go up from there.  If it works out, great.  If it does not, at least we tried.  I agree it makes all the sense in the world to be open minded and attempt to negotiate any offer that comes in.  The worst that can happen is that a seller counters an offer and the buyer rejects.

Posted by The Somers Team, Delivering Real Estate Happiness (The Somers Team at KW Philadelphia) over 11 years ago

I have seen this from both a listing agent, sometimes a low-ball offer can bring the realization to a seller that they are not being as realistic as they think.  In working with buyers, sometimes all the counsel you provide cannot sway them from making an absurdly low offer.  As I always tell my buyers, I can provide you with my advice, based on my experience, but at the end of the day I take my 'marching orders' from you.  So don't blame the messenger...I am looking out for MY client's best interests and their desire to 'give it a shot.'

Posted by Holly Weatherwax, A Great Real Estate Experience ( Associate Broker, Momentum Realty) over 11 years ago

As you know a seller always has three options, Accept, Reject or Counter. Educating the seller is key here. An initial rejection of an offer should not be an option, no matter how bad the offer. A counter always opens the door for further negotiations. Good Post!

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA over 11 years ago

Michael. I agree with you, don't close the door, you will never know what was behind it.

Holly. You are right, sometimes a low-ball offer gets the seller to realize where he/she is

Christopher & Stephanie. Yes! Worst case; no deal, at least we had something to talk about.

Lourdes. What do you mean two low offers...?

Endre. Yes, if the agent that wrote the offer is a professional, I give the low'ball offer more weight, I figure if he took the time to write it, there must be something worth looking into.

Jim. You are so right, Of course the offer better be "within the ball park". If it borders on the ridiculous, it is not worth the time to try and work it out. Nobody is going to give their house away either.

Keran Ann. Yes, the seller should be prepared to see those offers and fully understand the climate of this market and it all comes down to the agent that takes the listing. Good counseling about this type of offers from the beginning will go a long way.

Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

I entertain them, I let my seller's know you may not have another one come through in a long time!

Posted by Jeannette Neerpat, e-Pro Coral Springs/Parkland Real Estate ( over 11 years ago

So often agents and seller's take it so personally but I do believe that things have improved..the fewer the showings...the more valuable the offer..and if you were as good as you presented yourself in the listing should be able to show the value in working a low ball offer!  Also...I believe get it in'll have a better shot in negotiations! 

Congrats...its a great post and it was selected as a Blogger's Choice Selection Winner!

Posted by Midori Miller, Online Marketing For Real Estate Professionals (Talk 2 Midori, LLC) over 11 years ago

Midori, thank you very much for hightlighing my post about the low offers. I like your line: "The fewer the showings, the more valuable the offer" Yes, I agree with you that things are getting better, lt's hope that this market turns around soon.


Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

Hi Antonio & Alexia - great post and one that might do a seller well to read, and read, and re-read again.  I always tell my sellers that an offer, low-ball or not, is a starting place, and I was trained to always get a counter instead of a flat-out 'no'.  A low-ball offer is far better than no offer - someone took the time to write out an offer which shows they are interested in buying - so let's work with them to see where we can end up.  And that might just result in a sale - you never know until you try!

I like Midori's line - 'the fewer the showings the more valuable the offer' - that is so true!

Great post!

Posted by Ann Cummings, Portsmouth NH Real Estate Preferrable Agent (RE/MAX Shoreline - NH and Maine) over 11 years ago

The low ball offers are bad enough.  Worse are the ones that have no letter from a lender and the agent was lazy they did not even complete the contract, if they sent one at all.

Posted by Randy Prothero, Hawaii REALTOR, (808) 384-5645 (eXp Realty) over 11 years ago

Ann,I totally agree with you, is someone took the time to write you and offer, you should have the courtesy of giving a written response. It is only fair.

Randy, When an agent calls to say they have an offer, we give them the list of items that need to be there before we can present it. That includes the pre approval letter, agency relationships, copy of the deposit etc. etc.


Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago
yJKr2e wpxlgaxttydj
Posted by akaomykgu about 8 years ago