Why Multiple Offers Are Wrong

It’s not that I don’t trust people; it’s that people can’t always be trusted. Which isn’t necessarily the same thing. When you’re a Sacramento real estate agent like me — and been in the business since kids wore bellbottoms — you see enough to question what seems odd to you. People take that as mistrust, but it’s just enough usually to put my radar on alert. It’s the reason I was accepted into law school in my younger years. I am naturally inquisitive. The oddball in any equation is often suspect for a reason.

Sure enough, the offer that stood apart from all of the other offers this weekend for that home in Elk Grove did not make it past a 24-hour period. It’s not that the purchase offer crumbled and fell, it’s that it was most likely falsely presented in the first place. A statement in MLS informed buyer’s agents that all offers would be reviewed on a certain day at a certain time. This put buyers on notice that all offers would be given an equal opportunity for presentation. Therefore, by extension, a buyer who was not willing to wait for a response by that certain day should not submit an offer. To submit an offer without an intent to wait could very well invalidate the good faith covenant inherent in purchase contracts.

Whether a buyer realizes it or not, a buyer can make only one offer for a home in Sacramento. Some agents will tell buyers that they can make as many offers as they want and those agents would not only be wrong but they could be subject to discipline. If a buyer does not have the financial means to purchase every home a buyer writes an offer to buy, the offers are not real. There are laws that prohibit writing pretend offers. Buyers writing multiple offers they can’t afford to all buy is a big, huge, no-no. It’s also unprofessional, and fiduciary could be called into question as well because who would advise a buyer to break the law?

Yet, that did not stop an agent and Elk Grove buyers from writing more than one offer for a home in Elk Grove, offering as a lame excuse the buyers did not want to wait. This intent was undisclosed. This agent does not work for Lyon Real Estate, thank goodness. I can’t tell you which company but it wasn’t Lyon. I love working with Lyon real estate agents. I know they have been trained and they are supervised. Any little problems that could ever pop up are handled in a prompt and efficient manner. We have great management and communication among our agents at Lyon Real Estate. I can always trust a Lyon agent to do the job correctly.

When agents don’t respond after being informed their buyer’s offer has been accepted, that’s the first sign something is amiss. I didn’t hear from this buyer’s agent for more than 24 hours. A full 24 hours was also enough time to negotiate another offer. Of course, unknown to me, the agent could have dropped dead from a heart attack and been found lying splattered in the street somewhere, but that’s a long shot, don’t you think?

In any case, I have 3 very happy buyers this morning who have a renewed chance to buy a home in Elk Grove. If you read yesterday’s blog, 35 offers for a home in Elk Grove, you’ll see my gut said we should have countered all four offers. That was my suggestion. It’s not that I don’t trust people; it’s that some prove unworthy of trust. Being cautious is always wise in my playbook.

One deal is not worth a reputation. The shame is some agents never learn that lesson.


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