I recently encountered a situation in the super hot Long Island City market where there were multiple offers and the listing agent decided to go with the old stand-by; bring your highest and best offer. This situation begs the questions, do you really get the highest and best offer when you just request such? I contend that you don’t. The reality is that nobody wants to negotiate against themselves and raise their offer with no counter offer to guide them. My experience has been that this is often the agents’ idea as our Queens sellers look to us for guidance on how to handle such a situation. Do agents do this to save time and avoid having to answer each individual offer with a proper counter offer? There could easily be 20 or more offers but their certainly aren’t so many that each one can’t be dealt with individually. I have worked in enough situations where the buyer I’m working with has been on the receiving side of the request and they usually come back with a higher number, but not their highest. Another way to approach this situation which i think brings out truly the highest offers is to give a blanket counter offer to each purchaser and agent even if that number is over asking price.
For buyers reading this who may have to deal with this situation, what tips will help your offer stand out? Don’t loose hope that your offer can be accepted after all the highest offer isn’t always the best. The “best” part of the equation involves removing contingencies that may slow down the progress of the transaction. If you have the ability to do so, put more money down or pay cash entirely. This removes the biggest hurdle in getting the transactions done quickly, the mortgage process. Another option is to specify that your offer isn’t subject to inspections. You should still have the property inspected and you can still do so by bringing your inspector with your before making the offer.