Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®, Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea

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Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

    Last fall.   My Buyer had 24 hours to accept/reject the counter from the Seller... we found him another house the next morning and bought that one instead.   The Listing Agent called to see if we had accepted the counter offer.  I told her we had found another property, we are making an offer on that house, sorry.   The LA said the Seller would "hold my Buyer" to the original offer!

    Excuse me?  A brief reminder that a counter offer is a rejection, we have no offer or contract with your Seller, my Buyer is not bound to anything, thank you.   Hope you find someone else for your listing.

Jul 13, 2018 04:12 PM
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

That happens. We're not accepting your counter, sign the original offer or forget about it. Seller tried to get more out of buyer, buyer wouldn't give any more and seller blinked.I'll come back to see what the real deal was in your situation.
Don't tell me the buyer thinks they overpaid. LOL you're going to tell me that, aren't you?

Jul 13, 2018 03:47 PM
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate

Seller came to their senses. Buyer lost his senses (marbles). Now no one has a deal. 

Jul 13, 2018 06:08 PM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

The sellers' original counter-offer begins the negotiating all over again - meaning that the buyer is not, in the least, obligated to now, accept the signed original from the seller. 

Once the seller countered the first time, the buyers' Offer was null & void.

I had an agent do that to me here too - I had an Expiration of Offer clause and 3 days after my clients had walked and were actually, already under Contract on another home, the listing agent presented the 'signed Contract!' Yeah, sorry, too late!

Jul 13, 2018 07:45 PM
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

The seller's counteroffer rejected the original buyer's offer. The buyer need do nothing if he/she has decided to move on.

Jul 13, 2018 07:37 PM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA
https://HugginsHomes.com - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

The way I've been taught is that the original offer dies with the counter.  If the counter is rejected by the buyer then that deal is dead and it's on the buyer to submit a new offer.  The seller cannot come back and accept the original offer.

Jul 13, 2018 07:01 PM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

The submission of a counter offer means the original offer was not accepted and most likely expired. But if the client loved the house at their original offer what's changed since then?

Jul 14, 2018 04:20 AM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

The counter is a rejection and new terms so the original offer is not in play any longer. That trick might work with a new agent but not someone that knows the real estate law.

Jul 13, 2018 07:13 PM
Kasey & John Boles
Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - BoiseMeridianRealEstate.com - Boise, ID
Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties

Offer expired with the counter offer. Buyer can move forward if they want to but is under no legal obligation to do so. Should be an addendum stating the counter was rejected and the original terms are accepted by all parties. -Kasey

Jul 13, 2018 06:53 PM
Steve Higgins
RE/MAX Kelowna - Kelowna, BC

It would be up to my buyer. Sounds like your buyer is unsure, maybe it would be best for them to walk away if they are second thoughts.

Jul 13, 2018 05:20 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Well it hasn't happened to me but you don't have a contract, as far as my limited legal understanding goes. The counter rejected the offer. Good luck, sellers!

Jul 13, 2018 04:43 PM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, EXP - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Part of every counter is a rejection, up to the buyer as to whether they are willing to accept, at least that is how it is here.

Jul 13, 2018 04:33 PM
Harry Norman, REALTORS® - Atlanta, GA
Associate Broker

You take the accepted and fully executed offer and run with it.  

Jul 14, 2018 07:06 AM
Peter Testa
Nationwide Homes - Danbury, CT

There is no rewind button but I would think with some time spent explaining this across party lines the original offer could be saved. By no means is the buyer obligated to move forward but you'd think they'd want to being they offered that amount in good faith. Can't take negotiations personally.

Jul 14, 2018 06:04 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

There is no contract.

Jul 14, 2018 05:29 AM
Paul S. Henderson, REALTOR®, CRS
Fathom Realty Washington LLC - Tacoma, WA
South Puget Sound Washington Agent/Broker!

I have never had the Seller come back; usually the Buyer does...

Jul 13, 2018 09:51 PM
Lynnea Miller
Bend Premier Real Estate - Bend, OR
Premier Real Estate Service in Central Oregon

We dealt with a similar issue recently.  The acceptance is not valid until conveyed to the selling agent, and as this happened well after the timeframe given in the offer, the deal is not valid until a new addendum is drafted agreeing to the new time for acceptance.

Jul 13, 2018 08:57 PM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

So...what is the problem? Counter offer rejected and original offer accepted. If the original offer has not expired or been cancelled, it seems to me that we have an agreement.

Jul 13, 2018 06:05 PM
Dan Tabit
Keller Williams Bellevue - Sammamish, WA

It's up to the buyer.  A counter offer is a rejection, making that offer null & void in my understanding.  Any dated version of the early counter is proof.  I would ask the buyer what their second thoughts are?  Do they no longer like the home or are they thinking they might drive a harder bargain?  Renegotiating could be possible, but is dangerous as the seller will also have second thoughts about this buyer.  It's your clients call as to how to proceed. 


Jul 13, 2018 04:54 PM
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Grab that deal and get lots of repairs thrown in

Jul 14, 2018 09:06 AM
Don Baker
Lane Realty - Eatonton, GA
Lake Sinclair Specialist

If a seller counters the orignal offer is deemed rejected and buyer cannot be held to it at all in Georgia.

Jul 14, 2018 07:56 AM
Macy Babb ... North Georgia Realtor
Re/Max Around Atlanta Realtor - 404-234-6166 - Cartersville, GA
Realtor, SFR, HUD/REO Certified

I probably would have sent back a counter offer lower than the original offer, just to ;et the listing agent know that they should have explained the consequences better to their seller

Jul 14, 2018 07:38 AM
Wayne Zuhl
Remax First Realty II - Cranford, NJ
The Last Name You'll Ever Need in Real Estate

Buyer has already rejected the counter offer and therefore the home. Original offer isn't valid, although I think the buyer has the option to accept or refuse. 

Jul 14, 2018 07:11 AM
Teri Pacitto
Compass - Westlake Village, CA
Real Estate, Your Style...Your Home...My Specialty

It happens and I’ve had it happen on both sides of the transaction.  Sometimes sellers get greedy, multiple offers loose one or more buyers, or sellers has a change of heart. When this happens I explain to the buyer there may be many reasons, but if they want the property to move forward.  Sometimes they do, but sometimes they see it as a start to a less than positive buying experience.  Unfortunately, in this business emotions and attitude can derail a less than positive start.

As Agents, it’s a huge part of our job to guide both buyer and seller,  but ultimately it’s their decision.

Jul 14, 2018 07:03 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

The original offer died from the buyer's side when the seller countered. Now the seller is making an offer and the buyer can accept or reject! You can't have your cake and eat it to!

Jul 14, 2018 06:08 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

This is no longer a valid contract.  When the seller countered and the buyer rejected the offer became null and void.  It is now up to the buyer if they want to proceed or not.

Jul 14, 2018 05:54 AM
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of the Manchester NH's area Leading Agents

I would be excited the original offer was accepted and so should the buyer. If they no longer want it, they best let them know asap

Jul 14, 2018 04:34 AM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Good luck.

Jul 14, 2018 03:25 AM
Romylio "Romeo" Cordoba - NSB Realtor
Adams Cameron and Co. Realtors - New Smyrna Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate Agent

If your buyer is having second thoughts then I would just let them know they can walk away.

Jul 14, 2018 03:21 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

I'm not clear on your story nor has anything like what I'm guessing your sharing happned to me like that.

Jul 13, 2018 10:07 PM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


You have great answers. A

Jul 13, 2018 08:21 PM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

the buyer should take it be happy there was no bidding war....

Jul 13, 2018 04:20 PM
Tony Lewis
RE/MAX of Valencia (Hall of Fame) 30 year Valencia Resident - Valencia, CA
Summit Real Estate Santa Clarita & Aliso Viejo

Let the buyer decide after giving my input.

Jul 13, 2018 04:08 PM
Alan May
Jameson Sotheby's International Realty - Evanston, IL
A moving experience!

I've never had that happen (at least not without a phone call from the listing agent telling me that the seller has reconsidered, and would like to accept the original offer, if the buyer is still interested).

Without any mitigating circumstances... if the buyer has had a change of heart, s/he can easily make a strong case that there is no contract. The rejection voided the original offer.  But thanks for playing.

Jul 15, 2018 07:00 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Just present to the buyers, Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®

Jul 14, 2018 11:37 PM
Maria Sapio
Keller Williams of Central PA - Carlisle, PA
Real Estate Agent- Carlisle, PA. Mariasapio.com

Yes, I had a similar experience about a year ago and my buyer walked away... Some buyers feel like they're being 'played' when a seller counters an already strong offer.  
Greedy sellers and listing agents that do not fully explain exactly what a counter offer is = a deadly combination for contracts!

Jul 14, 2018 01:55 PM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

I suspect my buyers would have second thoughts as well.  As you mentioned, there is always more to the story much of which we do not expose in an open forum like this due to client confidentiality. 

Jul 14, 2018 11:53 AM
Jeanne Gregory
RE/MAX Southwest - Sugar Land, TX
The most important home I sell is YOURS!

Sometimes sellers get a bit too proud.  I'm assuming some of the conditions were agent infused, but in the end, the seller should have known that a counter is a rejection.  But then buyer must not be in love with the house or the situation if they want to move to another property.  Probably best for all.  When deals start out bad, they don't get much better as they go along. 

Jul 14, 2018 11:06 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Never had that happen to me before.


Jul 14, 2018 09:57 AM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Pump back up my buyer 

Jul 14, 2018 08:33 AM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Be happy and put the deal together.

Jul 14, 2018 08:21 AM
Evelina Tsigelnitskaya
SIB Realty - Sunny Isles Beach, FL
www.SIBRealty.org 305-931-6931

Happened to me too.

Nov 25, 2018 09:08 PM
Valeria Mola
SIB Realty - Miami, Sunny Isles Beach - Sunny Isles Beach, FL
305-607-0709 SIB Realty Condos for Sale and Rent

It is possible.

Nov 25, 2018 08:05 PM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

Not something that has happened to me. I would imagine that they thought they were getting a better offer that never materialized so they went, we need to sell.

Aug 12, 2018 01:44 PM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Sounds like the Seller wasn't getting other offers that would work.

Jul 17, 2018 05:12 PM
Susan Hale
Re/Max Realty of Defiance,Inc. - Defiance, OH
Re/Max Northwest Ohio Realtor

I agree, once the price or terms of the Buyers offer were modified by the Seller the offer became changed and Buyer is no longer obligated to purchase.  Your question does not state if the acceptance time was still in effect. There needed to be verbal communication between the agents to see if Buyer will still be interested with the original price & terms and then just rewrite the offer.

What got me flustered early in my career back in the 70's  is that a Seller can accept any other offer in the interim of time my Buyer's offer was still in effect for a response from the Seller.  If our offer wasn't good enough we expected a counter but instead received a call that another acceptable offer came in and the Seller sold their property to another Buyer.

Jul 17, 2018 06:53 AM