Legality of placing Multiple Offers

by admin on August 2, 2011

Since there are numerous foreclosures and short sales on the market, would it be feasible/legal to place offers on multiple properties at one time?

If you plan to go through with the purchase of every property you put an offer in on, then this is a perfectly accepted practice. However, if you only intend to purchase one property, then the answer gets a little more “gray area”.

There is nothing illegal about placing offers in on multiple properties at one time and I have done it in the past with clients, but only under extreme scenarios. Typically, it is best to put one in at a time as placing offers on multiple properties at once with the intent of only buying one, could present potential issues such as:

  1. Multiple offers being accepted at the same time:If you place more than one offer and two or more get accepted at the same time, it is possible that you could effectively be under contract for two different properties at the same time. There are contingencies that can be added to the sales provisions that would make it fairly easy to get out of a contract, but you do not want to be under contract with two different properties at the same time unless you are using it as a strategy to lock the property up in a fast-moving area. Doing this definitely needs to be discussed with your REALTOR® so there is no doubt what you are doing and apprpriate measures can be taken to minimize the risk of your earnest money.
  2. Asset Manager blocking: If both properties happen to be foreclosures, managed by the same servicing company (Wells Fargo for instance, not necessarily the same listing agent), and you are accepted on both properties but find issues with both and do not end up closing on either, you could actually be blacklisted from putting in offers to other assets (foreclosures) by that company.

There are other inherent dangers in using a practice of putting in offers in on multiple properties, but these are probably the biggest issues. If you are pressed for time on your house-hunt, you could use better strategies. Work with me to find homes you love. We will put in the first offer and if we are unable to make a successful deal, we can have a list of 2nd and 3rd choices. Then, we just move down the line. I can either write the offers and email them to you (you print, sign, and email/fax back). This is the most efficient way of doing things and assures that you do not run into any “sticky” situations.

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