Real Estate by Debbie Reynolds: 21 Ways to Get Your Offer Accepted During Multiple Offers Situations

21 Ways to Get Your Offer Accepted During Multiple Offers Situations

Tips to Make Sure Your Offer Win in a Multiple Offer Situation


Accepted offerAggressive markets with low inventory create stress not only buyers but for agents, too. Nobody likes to see a buyer disappointed when their offer lost out to another bidder and they could have done something to stop it. 


Though there are no guarantees and each market responds to different practices, this list of tips and strategies is from some of the best agents in the country that participated in a recent ActiveRain Contest on how to compete in a Hot Market. Using these tips will give you a leg up and help stack the deck in your favor by increasing the chances the offer will get a serious look and possible acceptance.


1. First, buyers need to understand up front that the market is hot and if they don't bid quickly and aggressively they may not get a second chance on any home.

2. Choose an agent that is experienced that will represent your interests. Every buyer needs a strong negotiator on his side.

3. The buyer's agent should have a good reputation for working with other agents. When competing with other similar offers, it may come down to which agent the seller and his agent trust more.

4. Be proactive. Buyers that wait to look on the weekends are often told the property sold earlier in the week.

5.Get your finances in order and have a strong pre-approval letter from a trusted lender ready and in hand.

6. Cash is king and if at all possible making this happen will move you to the topof the pile.

7. If you see it and like it, don't sleep on it. Those that wait lose out. Do it now.

8. Before writing the offer, the agent should talk with the seller's agent and see what the trigger points might be. It could be a quick closing is needed or a seller rent-back if the seller is building a home. Try to make it easy on the seller.

9. Considering offering over list price. Many homes are going thousands over list and buyers that understand that they only have one shot are getting the homes. 

10. Keep the offer clean with as few contingencies as possible. Even a home inspection is a contingency so make it for informational purposes only if you can and you will get the seller's attention. Be sure you are comfortable with the possible outcome if there are repairs you did not foresee.

11. An offer subject to appraisal or loan contingencies may be a put off to the seller. If you have the cash, considering covering the difference if the appraisal does not meet the sale price.

12. When writing the offer make certain you have the paperwork, contract, addenda and all disclosures are completed correctly and in their entirety's. This will show you are meaning business and not playing games.

13. If the property is in an HOA, review HOA rules and restrictions to be sure you are comfortable with them and ready to move forward.

14. A buyer letter stating how much you like the home can make a good impression on the seller. Selling homes is an emotional and financial decision and some sellers could be swayed by some kind words. Caution: This could backfire in some situations such as if a buyer states he has pets and the seller has been meticulous about caring for his home and thinks the pets might destroy it. Use good sense.

15. A photo of the buyer or a drawing of the new home by the buyer children will set your offer apart.

16. Call the agent to notify that an offer is on the way. This is another place that having good working relationships can help your offer get serious attention.

17. Some agents make a request to present the buyer's offer to the seller. This is when you can clearly state the case for the buyer and test the waters about it being understood or if there ae questions.

18. Consider using an escalation clause that has predetermined price increases should other offers come into play.

19. Strong earnest money conveys a solid message that the buyer is financially committed to the home and will likely not be bailing on the deal.

20. If possible, get an agreement that the seller response time will be quick. Showing urgency can show strength in being able to move forward fast.

21. K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Sweetie- the less complicated the offer is the more the seller and his agent will like it.

An experienced agent can determine which of these strategies should come into play. To read more from experienced agents on this subject that excelled in giving strategies and earned bonus points in the Hot Market Contest, click on the following links.

Hot Market Tips- How to Get your Offer Accepted by Kasey & John Boles 

Winning the Bidding War- No Contest- No Contest by John Marshall - FORE! 

Hot Market Strategies: Getting Your Offers Noticed & (Hopefullly) Accepted by Nina Hollander  


To make sure your offer competes well in Clarksville TN, contact The Real Debbie Reynolds at 931-320-6730. 

 Centruy 21 Platinum Properties2130 Wilma Rudolph Blvd.

Clarksville, TN 37040

When you need Real Estate services in Clarksville TN

                  it would be my pleasure to assist you!                             

Debbie Reynolds
"The Real Debbie Reynolds"

Check out all Clarksville TN Real Estate on My Website

931-771-9070 Office | 931-320-6730 Cell

Clarksville TN Homes 


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Comment balloon 64 commentsDebbie Reynolds • May 08 2017 07:51PM


Love this article and all 21 should make it but 15 and 17 should definitely help put the icing on the cake..

My favorite article for i gotta put some fire hot sauce on it..Boooom!

Posted by Dr. Karen Lewis, Broker 305-3231556, Residential for Sellers and Buyers in S. Broward (K1 Realty Group) over 1 year ago

This is excellent advice to share with prospective home buyers.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) over 1 year ago

Excellent compilation Debbie Reynolds and thanks for the shout out and the bonus points!!  That was a fun and educational challenge.  -Kasey

Posted by Kasey & John Boles, Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties (Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - over 1 year ago

Hi Debbie

This was a terrific contest and what a wonderful resource for us all, hot market or not!


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude (Solutions Real Estate ) over 1 year ago

LOVE IT Debbie Reynolds as most new listing result in multiple offers and buyers being left behind who do not follow these tips

Posted by Scott Godzyk, One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents (Godzyk Real Estate Services) over 1 year ago

Debbie Reynolds Thanks for the very good tips to get an offer accepted during multiple offers.

Posted by John Pusa, Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service (Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest) over 1 year ago

Debbie, Thanks for the great tips on ways to get your buyer's offer accepted in a multiple offer situation.

Posted by Sybil Campbell, REALTOR® ABR, SFR, SRES Williamsburg, Virginia (Long and Foster REALTORS® 5234 Monticello Ave Williamsburg, Virginia) over 1 year ago

Too true.  I've been up against up to 28 offers on a property, and it is getting tougher.  Last Friday I had a showing at 4PM.  At 12:30 PM I got an email calling for highest and best by the end of the day.  Ok, it would be tight but possible if my buyer loved the house.  At 2:30PM I got another email from the listing agent stating that the seller signed an offer, but my buyers could still come through his open house on Saturday. 

I have two ethical problems with that; 1. 2:30PM isn't end of my day,and 2: He's holding an open house that is not available.  In the feedback form, I told the agent that my buyers would not be attendign his open house, it was an ethical problem.  He emailed me that the sellers were just so excited that they wanted to get it under contract.

I couldn't help myself. "As nervous as the sellers may be, your job is to guide them to make a decision between all potential offers, adhere to professional courtesy, and not behave like an excited puppy." 

He shot back, "The open house was cancelled, and I'm not behaving like a puppy."

"Woof woof."  

Posted by Mary Jo Quay (Remax Results) over 1 year ago

Great list of tips, Debbie! What a great challenge to read the entries too!

Everyone has their own style and using many of these tips, I have had wonderful success these last three years (100% success for my buyers! YES, I'm knocking on wood!)  I have my own style though - every buyer, every home, agent on the other side and seller are different - it's all about strategizing with each of those factors being very carefully considered.

Some of these bidding wars are very hard-fought - others are easy-peasy to navigate. I like them both ways - as long a I keep winning for my buyers!  LOL

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) over 1 year ago

I really didn't think they were more than a few ways. I really like this!

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) over 1 year ago

Congratulations to your Featured Post, great to spread the word...Endre

Posted by Endre Barath, Jr., Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) over 1 year ago

Not three, not five, but 21 ways?  I'm impressed!  Great post.

Posted by Ralph Gorgoglione, Hawaii and California Real Estate (800) 591-6121 (Maui Life Homes / Metro Life Homes) over 1 year ago

I like 18. about the escalation clause, great thinking!

Posted by Eva B. Liland with Century 21 Doug Anderson, Glad to be of Service (Century 21 Doug Anderson) over 1 year ago

Think if  you were the seller... it is about less picky contingencies, simpler details in the paperwork they scan and consider along with the others competing for the real estate listing meat. Some buyers just don't want to be coached, to jump how high they need to for their offer to be accepted above the rest. The photo of children is that buyer if selected could be familial discrimination over another buyer who did not have kids. Easy does it.

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) over 1 year ago

Thank you for the great tips. I will bookmark this post and share with others 

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 1 year ago

This is a thorough list of ways to get an offer accepted. Regarding #7, another agent once said to me, "If they want to sleep on it, they won't be sleeping in it" and that's so true!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, over 1 year ago

Debbie, great post.  Thanks for sharing.  I have the opportunity to use many of these and you are correct, they do work!!!

Posted by Matthew Klinowski, PA, Golf Community Real Estate Specialist (Downing-Frye) over 1 year ago

Good morning Debbie Reynolds ,

Congratulations on a well deserved featured post! I use many of these tips in multiple offers and have found them to work. It's all about strategies -  every buyer, home and agent on the other side are different. It's fun to make the plan, execute it and win! #18 is not an option for us, the Texas Real Estate Commission has banned it.

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899) over 1 year ago

Hi Debbie... thanks for the "honorable"mention. Great post and everyone can learn a little something from it.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage ) over 1 year ago

Thanks Debbie.  This is a great list of ideas for those buyers facing multiple offer situations.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) over 1 year ago

Morning and what a great article to wake up to !

Our market is hot under 400k right now.

I think I have used all your points at one time or another depending on my buyers abilities or looking for your points when working with a seller.

Your strongest professional note is have a good reputation in our Realtor Community with other professionals. ONCE you have an agent who puts their ego before their clients best interest you will remember you had a difficult transaction with that agent.

Posted by Sharon Kowitz, Cary, NC Relocation Specialist ~ Buying or Selling (CRS-SRES-ABR-GRI-E-Pro-CREN Fonville Morisey Cary, NC) over 1 year ago

Awesome blog... and very useful for this time in the market.  Thank you for sharing!

Posted by Norma J. Elkins, Realtor - Elkins Home Selling Team ( Elite Realty Group) over 1 year ago

Good morning Debbie, these are all great tips for buyers in hot seller's market as well as their agents. Well deserved feature and a timely post.

Posted by Beth Atalay, Cam Realty of Clermont FL (Cam Realty and Property Management) over 1 year ago

All this post proves is how worthy an agent Debbie Reynolds is........

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 1 year ago

Great tips...used several of them on a regular basis...first one is the most important

Posted by Macy Babb ... North Georgia Realtor, Realtor, SFR, HUD/REO Certified (Re/Max Around Atlanta Realtor - 404-234-6166) over 1 year ago

I do agree with all of these.   #8 specifically is  good one.  With a call to the listing agent , you cac find out if they need a quick close, or if sellers need to stay for 2 weeks after closing... which your offer can offer.  

Posted by Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula, Excellent Sales and Property Management (House Match Inc) over 1 year ago

I can throw in a few more. Like 1) pay more of the closing costs for the seller, which won't affect the appraisal. 2) Agree to release more of the down payment money after a certain date, like the home inspection. And 3) attach an estimated closing statement so the seller knows the net and allocation, because most listing agents don't tell them.

Posted by Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents, Put 40 years of experience to work for you (Lyon Real Estate) over 1 year ago

That's a bookmark.  Thanks for sharing your success strategies.

Posted by Mick Michaud, Your Texas Lifestyle is Here! (Distinctly Texas Lifestyle Properties, LLC Office:682/498-3107) over 1 year ago

Good article.  Thanks.

Posted by Deb McGuire CNE, ABR, SRS (Keller Williams Capital Partners) over 1 year ago

Great info that's so important in today's marketplace.  Buyers need to be prepared, and those in & around Clarksville TN should be calling you for this level of expertise

Posted by John Meussner, #MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852 (Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA,) over 1 year ago

Hi Debbie - Thanks for putting these tips together in one place - this is a valuable resource for everyone working in difficult, low-inventory markets.

Posted by Dick Greenberg, Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate (New Paradigm Partners LLC) over 1 year ago

Wow - certainly a wealth of helpful information here on ways to get offers accepted in a hot sellers market. 

Posted by Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist (KD Realty - 408.972.1822) over 1 year ago

Really great tips!!

Posted by Jackie Barikhan, Right Choice Mortgage - over 1 year ago

Great post, thank you. I also like to search the listing agent's recent transaction history, or office roster, and see if we might have a friend-agent in common. I've had luck in the past reaching out to an agent that I knew well, that also knew the listing agent well, that then vouched for me that I was a professional and easy to work with.

Posted by Greg Kilroy, the Velocity Group (Keller Williams Sonoran Living - The Velocity Group) over 1 year ago

Dear Debbie,

22. Be lucky.

Posted by Dörte Engel, ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland (RE/MAX Leading Edge) over 1 year ago

Very helpful - thanks!

We have a very heated market in our area (Toronto, Canada) with house prices up almost 50% since last year. Multiple offers are the name of the game these days!

Posted by Edward Drennan, Serving the Oakville, Ontario Area (Century 21 Dreams) over 1 year ago

Great post!   You covered one aspect that agents often don't think about... the HOA rules & regulations if a HOA is involved.  The time to review the rules for the community is before a buyer writes an offer, not after an offer is accepted.  Well said.

Posted by Diane Christner (Bright Realty) over 1 year ago

Great blog Debbie.  I don't do buyer letters but I love the ideas you put forth in this article.  You knocked it out of the park.  Congrats from an old friend.

Posted by Tni LeBlanc, Realtor®, J.D., Tenacious Tni (805) 878-9879 (Mint Properties, Lic. #01871795) over 1 year ago

Nice job! Really does justice to explaining the present market conditions.

Posted by Frank S. Pruse Jr. over 1 year ago

Excellent post and points.  I especially like your #21 K.I.S.S.   This would include not asking for personal items as that makes the seller crazy.  Bookmarking this one. 

Posted by Teri Pacitto, Real Estate, Your Style...Your Home...My Specialty (Compass) over 1 year ago

Great post Debbie!


We also provide a cover letter to point out to the listing agent the well qualified buyer and the credible lender.

Posted by Jon Boyd, Ann Arbor Real Estate Buyers Agent (Home Buyer's Agent of Ann Arbor) over 1 year ago

Fantastic post, Debbie. I agree that simple terms, a decent offer, financing in place and a reputable and respected agent are priceless in these situations.

Posted by Chris Lima, Local or Global-Allow me to open doors for you. (Atlantic Shores Realty Expertise) over 1 year ago

There are a lot of great tips in this blog, Debbie. These are especially important in some of the hot markets around the country. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Nathan Gesner, Broker / Property Manager (American West Realty and Management) over 1 year ago

Good post! #16, in my experience, doesn't always help. It can hinder. I do let the agent know the offer is coming, but only minutes before I send it. If you tell them too far in advance, they call every other agent that had an interested buyer and encourage more offers to come in. Not that it isn't a good way to represent a seller, but I don't like to give them too much time to work on that.

Posted by Jamie King, Sandusky, OH (Hoty Enterprises, Inc.) over 1 year ago

Loved the points you made!  Especially calling the listing agent to get seller needs addressed on closing dates, etc., before the offer is made.  I think that shows the listing agent that you will be considerate of everyone's time and resources, which *often* ends up winning your buyer the property!  We have a strong seller's market in our area, too, and keeping these points in mind is always advantageous for buyers! :-)

Posted by Barbara Murphy, GRI, e-PRO, GREEN, FMS, MRP (Tartan Properties, Pensacola~Pace~Milton~Gulf Breeze~FL) over 1 year ago

Terrific points! I'm working with a Buyer now and he's understanding that to prevail, there can be no hesitation. Great post, definitely worth keeping.

Posted by DALIA KIBBY, Selling Broward County Homes with Passion! (Keller Williams Realty Partners SW) over 1 year ago

Many great ideas, not all work for all localities, "markets" or properties, but having a great agent that you communicate well with and asking questions where you have them is the glue that brings it all together.  This is a great read for all buyers.  Thanks for sharing, Debbie.

Posted by Drick Ward, "RealtorDrick" - Experienced Representation (NEPTUNE REALTY) over 1 year ago

I would like to hear more about escalation clauses and how they are working .

Posted by Kathie Vanhorn over 1 year ago

Great information and right on the mark!

Posted by Anna Hatridge, Missouri Realtor with Goodson Realty (Goodson Realty) over 1 year ago

All important points. Our office does not like the escalation clauses--the market is hot enough and I feel some buyers just get too caught up in the emotion of 'gotta have this house'.  Very difficult to show a home and say ' ok you need to decide within the next 15 minutes if you want to make an offer'.  A lot of pressure, especially for first timers.

Posted by Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR, Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area (Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes) over 1 year ago

What great tips. There is so much information for buyers to process. Setting expectations up-front can help them on their path to homeownership.

Posted by Melissa Spittel, "Achieving Results Together " (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) over 1 year ago

All terrific points, Debbie! Especially personally presenting your buyer's offer. Doing so has tipped the scales in my buyer's favor a few times.


Posted by Debra Donovan, San Francisco Real Estate (Transpac Real Estate) over 1 year ago

Debbie, I think you have a list that will make a difference for buyers in a multiple offer market.

The right agent, and ready to go are key.

Posted by John Wiley, Lee County, FL Real Estate GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA (Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty) over 1 year ago

Perfect!  Awesome Post ... need to share :)

Posted by Donna Lewis Stiles - Ocean Pines MD, Your Guide to Beach Home Living (PenFed Realty - Resort Group) over 1 year ago

Debbie Reynolds - thanks for the 'summary' of all the entries in this contest!

We all learn from such contest --- and it helps us in our business.


Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) over 1 year ago

Good morning, Debbie!

Excellent points!  Mulitple offers are being presented due to a lack of inventory on the current market here in Pennsylvania.  Buyers should make arrangements to see a property as soon as possible after it comes on the market.  I have a list of Buyers that have been searching for a while and unable to find a property due to timing.


Posted by Brigita McKelvie, Associate Broker, The Broker with horse sense and no horsing around (Cindy Stys Equestrian and Country Properties, Ltd.) over 1 year ago

Thank you Debbie for the great information!

Posted by Peter Davies, Exceptional service, without exception... (Borawski Real Estate) over 1 year ago

Good morning again Debbie. Well, I think you covered this really well. Terrific job.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 1 year ago

Great post!  This could either be #22 or an extension of #5: as a lender, we help a lot of borrowers by geting them COMPLETLEY qualified before they even start looking for a home.  In other words, we take them through the entire underwriting process and get them APPROVED for a specific amount so that when they find the house they want, they can make an immediate offer and hand an LSU with their offer to the seller.  In most instances (and especially now while it's a seller's market), this is actually BETTER than cash.  Cash offers, 99% of the time, are below the asking price.  With someone who has FULL APPROVAL from the lender up to a certain dollar amount, they can walk into a bidding war and wipe out the three full-price offers that only have pre-quals and the cash offer that's $10-15K below the asking price - the reason being, of course, that the seller's agent sees this LSU as strong as cash (because it's almost like the underwriter asking "to whom do I write out the check"), but the offer is above the cash offer.  Generally, when we do this, the transaction can be closed in less than three weeks. 

Posted by Grant Greene, Mortgage Banker & Broker (Priority Lending) over 1 year ago

Thanks for sharing Debbie. I agree with Grant above. If I may add to please indicate in the Pre- Approval letter that all the elements of 4 Cs (credit, capacity, cash, and collateral) have been reviewed and AUS approval has been obtained. If escalation clause is included, please include in the addendum that buyer will pay cash for the shortfall in appraised value.

Posted by Sam Kader, Real Estate and Mortgage Broker (Pacific Coast Financial LLC) over 1 year ago

With thinventory everywhere ...these are exellent sucggestions !

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) over 1 year ago

Debbie Reynolds All excellent points made and our past level of success in the instances of multiple offer scenarios attests to following these tips.

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (Realty National) over 1 year ago

Good advice here. The cleanest offer with the least number of hoops for the seller and buyer often is the accepted offer!

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) about 1 year ago

Debbie Reynolds "Choose an agent that is experienced that will represent your interests. Every buyer needs a strong negotiator on his side." and "Get your finances in order and have a strong pre-approval letter from a trusted lender ready and in hand."

Right on target - and - re-blog!

Posted by Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers, Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ (BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty) 8 months ago