Q. I’m in some financially difficulty and need to sell my property quickly, I have spoken to the Agent that sold the place to me and explained the situation and we have discussed what I could accept as a bottom line. He suggested marketing a bit below market value to attract attention quickly which has worked really well as I now have three offers on the table all at the same figure -my bottom line. Only trouble is I now have to decide which buyer to run with, my agent has been quite helpful in advising me on which buyer he thinks is solid but ultimately has turned it over to me to make the final decision. What should I be looking for considering I need this to happen quickly and with no risk of the sale falling through?
A. Choosing the right buyer in this type of situation can be difficult and of course you are under pressure financially and can’t afford to get this wrong which makes the decision even harder. You need to scrutinise each buyer quite closely in order to make the right decision, the first thing you need to establish is are they chain free? Any of the buyers that are in a chain where the purchase of your property is dependent on the sale of theirs should be taken out of the mix altogether, when time is not on your side you can’t afford for your buyer to lose their buyer as you will end up back at square one again. Secondly – how are they financing the purchase? Are any of the buyer’s cash? If you are lucky enough to have a cash offer on the table from one of the buyers then immediately this offer should go to the top of the pile. This is because the purchase will not necessarily be hindered by a down valuation or a bad survey, someone with cash can still proceed if either of those issues were to raise their ugly head, whereas a buyer raising a mortgage will be dependent on the lenders decision and they could say ‘no’ or maybe want to renegotiate the price if the surveyor down values it. Thirdly, who is the buyer? Are they buying for investment or purchasing a home to live in? Investment buyers are looking for a bargain whereas someone buying to live in may be emotionally attached to the property even at this early stage, thus be willing to be more patient if there are any hiccups along the way whereas an investor could walk away if something better comes along meanwhile. Timing is another consideration, how quickly can they exchange and complete? Someone that is in a position to exchange quickly is very valuable as this will lock them in as the sale becomes legally binding at this stage. All four of the above should be considered carefully before making your decision. Although your agent has turned it over to you ultimately to make the decision he will give you good advice that is well worth listening too when it comes to making your final decision.