Having your offer rejected on a property you really
wanted can be disappointing, but don't let it be the end of your home buying
journey. There are ways you can move forward.
It can be
heart-breaking. You’ve saved for a deposit, you’ve searched for properties,
found the one you are keen on, and put in an offer...only for it to be
If this happens to
you, don’t worry. In our experience it often means one of two things; you need
to re-negotiate, or it just wasn’t the property for you and there is a better
one around the corner.
These are the key
steps to take if your offer is rejected and you still want to buy the
Why was I rejected?
The first job is to
understand why the offer was rejected. There are typically five reasons for the
offer being rejected, including when the seller:
the asking price
only wants to or is allowed to sell to a cash buyer
to move in a short period of time
your offer being based ‘subject to survey’ or another contingency
Your offer was rejected for a higher offer
this is the easiest reason to tackle and it comes down to how much you want the
property and whether you can – and should – offer more.
For example, if you
offered £150,000 on the property for sale, but others have offered £155,000 or
more, ask yourself: can you beat their offer? And do you want to?
Be aware though,
your lender will organise – typically at your expense – a valuation on the
property, so do check that the final offer you make is one that is still
reasonable and you aren’t paying ‘over the odds’ or it may be down valued by
your lender and you could lose the sale after spending on conveyancing and a
around pricing and offers is normal, but don't put yourself at risk. If you
really can't afford it or can't come up with the extra money, it's better not
to risk it.
The seller wants the asking price
If you've looked at
the value of the property and put in an offer under the asking price, this may
not be welcome news to the seller.
It’s amazing how
much sellers fix in their minds that they want the asking price for a property,
especially when they receive an offer – even if the property has been up for
sale for some time.
In this case,
especially if there aren’t any other offers on the table, it’s worth holding
back for at least a few days to let the offer ‘sink in’ with the seller as they
may then accept it or come back with a reasonable counter offer that you can
Make sure you put
in writing to the agent that you are keen on the property and if any other
offers come in, ask if they can they let you know so you can consider a counter
Seller only wants to or allowed to sell to a cash buyer
When advising sellers
on accepting an offer, part of the advice is to look at who is most likely to
be able to buy the property without any hiccups. Truthfully, this is most
likely to be a cash buyer who doesn’t have to rely on the checks a mortgage
lender will make.
If this is the
case, then speak to your broker or lender and show the agent and seller you
have already secured a mortgage agreement in principle and this may well
reassure them that you are as organised as you can be.
However, there may
always be scenarios where mortgages buyers lose out to cash buyers.
The seller wants to move in a short period of time
Linked to organising
your finances, it might be a cash buyer has made a better offer or a lower one,
but the seller and agent feel that it’s more likely that the cash buyer will be
able to complete quickly.
If this is the
case, it’s worth finding out from your broker how long the lender they are
recommending typically takes to make a formal offer. They may be very quick, or
they may be one of the well-known slower ones, in which case it may be worth
letting your broker know part of your decision to choose a lender is based on a
In this case, it
might be worth speaking to the agent/seller and seeing if you can agree on a
timeframe that works for them and then discussing the chance of this being
achieved with your broker/lender and your conveyancing company.
You will need to be
on the ball when it comes to paperwork you need to sign, so make sure you put
time aside to progress your move. Also, try not to go on holiday during this
time as this can delay things by some weeks, which a seller that wants to move quickly
is not going to like.
The seller rejects your offer being based ‘subject to survey’ or another
Ideally you want to
make sure any offer made is ‘subject to survey’ or you might have another
contingency request, such as wanting the seller to take the property off the
market while you progress the purchase. It would be quite worrying if a seller
didn’t want a property to be sold ‘subject to survey’ as this might suggest
there are problems they know about but aren’t being honest about, so think very
carefully before you remove this contingency.
Another reason they
might not want this to happen is that they are worried it will delay the
purchase, so if you can find a surveyor who can visit the property relatively
quickly, within a few weeks, they may be happy to accept your offer.
Secondly, if the
seller doesn’t want to take the property off the market, this should be another
‘red flag’ as it suggests they are hoping for a better offer and you may be
opening yourself up to being gazumped.
One way round this
issue could be to put a timeframe on how long it comes off the market. For
example, ask for it not to be marketed or other viewings to take place for 4-6
weeks rather than the full time it would take to purchase. This would allow you
to do the work you needed to make sure the property purchase was right for you
and supported by your lender.
Having an offer
rejected can, at the time, seem like the worse thing to happen, but it can also
be a good thing. The seller may be trying to hide something that’s wrong with
the property, or they may drop your offer at a later stage for a higher one, so
you end up wasting money on conveyancing and surveys.
The key is to take
your time to re-evaluate whether this is the right property for you. Think
about whether the price you are offering (and what the seller wants) is
reasonable and indeed whether the seller is a realistic one or hanging out for
a price they just won’t receive, which may mean after some months for this to
sink in, you end up securing the property anyway.
Taken from an article published to https://www.reallymoving.com/first-time-buyers/guides/what-if-my-offer-on-a-property-is-rejected