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How To Bounce Back After Your Offer Was Rejected

Miranda Crace4-Minute Read
November 16, 2021

You found the home of your dreams tucked away in the perfect neighborhood. It has all the amenities you could ever want, but there's a problem. You put in an offer and the seller rejected it or they didn’t even respond.

Now, you’re not just struggling to handle the heartache of having a house offer rejected, you’re also wondering what steps to take next. Below, we’ll explain what to do when your offer is turned down.

What Does It Mean When A Seller Rejects Your Offer?

If a seller rejects your original home purchase offer, you should determine if you put your best bid forward. There could be some major underlying reasons why this happened. Still, chances are slim that a seller will change their mind unless a new offer is presented.

There are really two choices left when dealing with the aftermath of having a home offer rejected: you can make another offer or you can decide to walk away. So, do you battle it out with other potential buyers, or do you move on?

Before you make that call, you might be banging your head on the wall trying to figure out why a seller would decline your grand proposal in the first place. While it’s impossible to know all of the reasons why a seller decides to accept or reject an offer, it's a good time to reevaluate your home purchase strategy.

Common Reasons House Offers Are Rejected

Here are several common reasons a seller might pass on your home purchase bid.

  • Your offer came in lower than that of competing buyers.
  • Sellers have grandiose ideas about what their home is worth.
  • Sellers might prefer buyers who meet specific financing requirements.
  • Preferred closing time frames may not be aligned between buyer and seller.
  • Your requests for repairs might be considered unreasonable by the seller.
  • The seller has some other elusive motivation that you can't pinpoint.

Avoid the compulsion of trying to research every single reason behind the decision to have your offer rejected. It might be enticing to Google everything you know about the seller, but it'll only lead to more unanswered questions and a major headache. No matter what the reason, look over your original offer and determine if you need to restructure your terms or make a home search rebound.

What Happens If A Home Seller Doesn't Respond To An Offer?

Typically, the original offer will include a deadline that provides the seller with a date when you’d need a response. If there's no response to your home offer by that time, the offer expires. This means you can walk away without any contractual obligations.

There is a chance that getting no response signifies that your offer was too low to be considered seriously by the seller. On the other hand, if the seller is simply slow to respond, speak with your real estate agent to follow up with the seller's agent. Ask them to find out if there is a counteroffer or if the seller can provide any reasoning behind having your house offer rejected.

The next action you take all depends on how willing you are to wait or how quickly you need to move on. You can try your hand at the long game, hoping that the seller will justify your home offer and reduce their asking price. That said, you might have more luck finding a new home that's better than the first.

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Does A Seller Have To Sign A Rejected Offer?

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, offers may be refused verbally. However, it's recommended to have sellers sign or initial any home offer rejected.

Sellers have several options when receiving a bid: make a counteroffer with revisions, reject your offer or accept your offer as-is. A seller can counter and ask for changes to the earnest money deposit, purchase price or any repair requests. Likewise, a buyer can also counter a counteroffer by negotiating the seller's demands.

Confused? Keeping track of multiple offers and counteroffers can be tedious yet important. Your buyer’s agent will help you stay in the loop with the most recent changes and tell you when your offer becomes a fully executed contract.

When To Walk Away If Your Offer Is Rejected

Let’s say that you gave it another shot. After several rounds of negotiations between you and the seller, you find your offer rejected once again. Knowing when it's time to say goodbye may work in your favor in the long run. It might be time to walk away if you find a better home on the market, find significant repair issues or are capped when it comes to your financing.

Waiting too long to let your agent know about your cold feet might make things harder down the line, especially when it comes to paperwork. Speak to your agent about your concerns before you're potential house is under contract. Believe it or not, letting go and finding a new home could be what you need to regain your home buying confidence.

The Bottom Line

While there's no way to completely avoid having an offer dismissed, speaking with real estate experts will give you a leg up on the competition. Although it's not an exact science, an agent can suggest adjustments, such as increasing your bid or changing some other aspect of your offer.

In some cases, they might even recommend walking away from the deal altogether. If you have any questions about financing and qualifications, a banker can also be an invaluable asset.

Want to know more about setting reasonable terms during home sale negotiations? Read our guide to contingent offers to learn about the more typical requests.

Miranda Crace

The Rocket Homes blog is here to bring you all you need to know about buying, selling and making the most of your home. Whether you’re thinking about becoming a homeowner, selling your current home or looking to keep your place in tip-top shape, our writers and freelancers bring their experience and expertise to meet you right where you are.