If you are selling a home what is the best way to respond to low ball offers? The wrong response is to take it personally and become emotional. Sellers are anxious when they receive an offer and if it’s a low ball offer you can feel the sellers frustration. If you respond emotionally you accomplish nothing, except to upset yourself even more. Instead you should keep in mind the adage, “it’s only business”. Negotiating a successful transaction becomes increasingly difficult if not impossible as the seller becomes more and more emotional. Rational decision making flies out the window.
The last offer to be stressed about is a crappy low ball offer. I can understand being disappointed but an offer that’s not even close to being workable is taking the stress off not putting it on. The stressful offers are the ones close to your bottom line but not quite. With a bad offer you haven’t lost anything and why get stressed out about a buyer that isn’t serious or realistic.
With low ball offers don’t focus on the start but keep an eye on the finish. I’ve had a significant number of low ball offers from buyers that start low but end up working out fine. Some buyers just like to start low but are willing to compromise. The first thing I discuss with my sellers is to flush out the viable deals. A truly bad offer is one that’s only looking to steal the home at a bargain basement price. These are the deals we don’t want to waste time on and just need to go away. If it’s viable then we can begin to have serious negotiations.
The most common response to low ball offers is to quickly see if they are going to be realistic. With this in mind I counter with very little give from the list price. The idea is to see how the buyer counters next. If you can get them into the ball park then you have someone you can negotiate with. If they still aren’t realistic I would politely pass and let them know you are open to future discussions. Never slam the door shut. One never knows when a buyer may resurface.