Escalation Clauses: A legal way to guarantee a multiple offer win?
The OAR Legal Assistance Hotline receives an array of real estate-related legal questions — including license law issues, disclosure, contract law, ethics and commission problems, among others. In an effort to help you work within the law we spotlight some of the timely questions that are being asked by REALTORS. This one centers on the legality of gaining an edge in multiple offer situations…
Q: My seller received multiple offers on her property. The seller directed me to disclose to all buyers that she had received multiple offers and to request they each make their highest and best offer. One of the buyers had his agent submit an offer which provides that the buyer will pay $250,000 or $1,000 more than any other offer. Is this legal?
(July 17, 2017, OAR Buzz)
Help! Two of my buyers want the same house!!
In today’s market it’s not unusual for an agent to represent more than one buyer looking at the same property. But what if two buyers you represent both want to make offers to purchase the same property at the same time? How do you handle this situation without violating your agency duties to each of those buyers?
(July 10, 2017, OAR Buzz)
Legally speaking: Can a buyer get a ‘do-over’ after rejecting a counter?
Q: A buyer made an offer which the sellers countered. The buyer told his agent he was rejecting this counteroffer and the buyer’s agent communicated this fact to the listing agent. The next day the buyer called his agent and told her he had reconsidered and really wanted the house after all. The agent immediately called the listing agent, only to find out that the sellers were accepting another offer. When the first buyers learned this they hurriedly signed the sellers’ counteroffer and their agent hand delivered it to the listing agent’s office. Do the sellers have a legally enforceable contract with the first buyer?
(June 5, 2017, OAR Buzz)
Preparing your buyers for a multiple offer situation
Low interest rates combined with low inventory levels has resulted in an increasing number of buyers competing for the same limited number of properties. In some hot markets, there have even been accounts of sellers receiving as many as 15 offers the day the for-sale sign goes up. While this is great for sellers, it’s leaving many anxious buyers frustrated and upset at losing out on their dream house.
(April 17, 2017, OAR Buzz)
Text messages can form contract
Two courts from Massachusetts have determined that parties can enter into a valid real estate purchase contract via text message. However, both courts ruled that no contract was formed via text, as the real estate professional lacked the authority to bind the principal in the first case and the purported agreement failed to satisfy the Statute of Frauds in the second instance. (Nov. 28, 2016, OAR Buzz)
Commonly asked questions about multiple offers
(July 22, 2016, OAR Buzz)
Legally Speaking: Dealing with first right of refusal clauses
(Nov. 30, 2015, OAR Buzz)
Legally Speaking: Can a listing agent refuse to present an offer?
(June 1, 2015, OAR Buzz)
Legally Speaking: What should I do if they won’t sign?
(Dec. 15, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Legally Speaking: Can I write a purchase contract for parties involved in a FSBO transaction?
(Dec. 2, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Top 10 Contract Questions
(Aug. 11, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Exercise caution when communicating via email in real estate transactions
(July 28, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Is it ever OK to let a buyer, inspector in a listing without you?
(May 27, 2014, OAR Buzz)
A legal way to guarantee a multiple offer win?
(April 7, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Dealing with a negative home inspection report
(March 24, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Contract conundrums… Important considerations for Ohio REALTORS
(Feb. 18, 2014, OAR Buzz)
The case of the reluctant seller
(Feb. 3, 2014, OAR Buzz)
Ohio Court ruling clarifies “fixture vs. trade fixture” in commercial leases
(Dec. 10, 2013, OAR Buzz)
What does an ‘as is’ clause really mean?
Dec. 9, 2013, OAR Buzz)
When does writing an addendum become practicing law?
(Oct. 14, 2013, OAR Buzz)
Does contact with an appraiser cross the line?
(Sept. 30, 2013, OAR Buzz)
Does an earnest money dispute preclude a new contract?
(Sept. 17, 2013, OAR Buzz)
Is notification required when multiple offers are received?
(Aug. 5, 2013, OAR Buzz)
Is it OK to ‘shop offers?’
(Feb. 25, 2013, OAR Buzz)
When it comes to a wall-mounted television…does it stay or does it go?
(Dec. 11, 2012, OAR Buzz)
(Nov. 16, 2012, OAR Buzz)
The legality of digital signatures
(Nov. 12, 2012, OAR Buzz)
Ohio REALTOR magazine sneak peek: Avoiding the ‘land mines’ of contract negotiations
(Aug. 6, 2012, OAR Buzz)
VIDEO: Legal Matters: How to properly handle offers
(May 14, 2012, OAR Buzz)