Offer Night…Bring Multiple Copies and De-register If You Change Your Mind.
Mastermind at my office is always a lot of fun and as the office expands and matures the topics tend to get a bit more technical in nature. That creates a challenge for some of the newer agents whose eyes start to glaze over. So every once in a while I have to reign in the conversation and steer it back to day-to-day operational questions. Like what happens on multiple offer night.
One of the policies that we have at Bosley Real Estate is that if an agent gets an offer on his own property AND is in multiple offers, one of the managers (in this case, me) steps in to represent the Seller. In an era where offers can be signed back multiple times, this is the third best way to handle a situation like this. The first of course, is to categorically refuse to represent a buyer, either as a client or customer, in the transaction. The second is to clearly state that you operate on the “one shot rule” so bring your best offer and be prepared to lose by one dollar. Our system works pretty well. The listing agent presents first then leaves the premises and has no way to know what the other offers are. If the seller wants to send all the offers back the listing agent has no advantage over any other agent thus guaranteeing that everyone remains on an equal playing field. Everyone is treated fairly.
Last week I was called in to manage an offer situation and the result of that process provided a great topic for the following day’s mastermind session.
So let me set the stage. The sellers come to my office and settle in to our large boardroom. We wait while the other agents arrive. There are supposed to be six in total including the listing agent and another agent from my office plus four agents from other competitor offices. All six have registered their offers through the front desk.
So we begin. The listing agent presents first. She brings in four copies of her offer. One for each of the two sellers, one for me and one for herself to refer to. The next Bosley agent presents, with three signed copies. The next agent presents with one copy of his offer which I review with the two sellers straining awkwardly to follow along. The next agent also presents with one copy of the offer but as soon as I turn the page I realize that the buyers have not signed the signature page. The next agent also only has one copy but is missing our schedule A. The final agent doesn’t show up at all or bother to call and rescind his offer.
So with six registered offers only four bring the required and properly executed paperwork, two bring enough copies to go around, one misses essential signatures, one misses the required schedule and one doesn’t even show up. Not good.
Despite the efforts, or perhaps because of the efforts of all the agents, the house sells well over the asking price, but it highlights two critical aspects of the offer presentation. First, it is essential to have enough copies to go around. I think that we often miss this critical step in the heat of the moment. There will be a time in the not-so-distant future when we will be using our tablets to conduct the sale but for now agents should provide multiple copies if only to be polite to all the parties in the room. Second, while you have every right to revoke your offer before the presentation, it is important to follow the necessary protocols. An agent must, at the very least, inform the listing brokerage that they will not be presenting. Sometimes it’s the little things that go along way to a successful transaction.
mark mclean is the Broker/Manager at the Bosley Real Estate Queen St W office and Director at Large for the Toronto Real Estate Board and President-Elect in 2014-15.