Selling Reno And Sparks Real Estate Blog


Highest and Best are Not Synonymous

Because here in Northern Nevada we are seeing listing agents ask buyers to submit their best and highest offers on properties that are receiving multiple offers, it is important to realize that this does not always mean we need to raise our offer! Please read the following post to get a clearer understanding of this process.

Highest and Best are Not SynonymousWe see it all the time in the MLS.  Multiple offers received please submit your highest AND best offer by Tuesday at 5PM.

Yet highest and best do not always go together.  A few months ago one of my listings garnered multiple offers.  Some of them were well above the list price and though it was tempting to think big bucks, the sellers picked the BEST offer.  After the property settled and the sales price posted in the MLS I got an email from an agent who had submitted a higher offer wanting to know why their offer wasn’t selected. It was obviously higher than the closing price.

Patiently I tried to explain that we looked at all of the offers and selected the one that had the best terms and conditions for the sellers.  “But ours was a higher price.” Again it has nothing to do with higher price it has everything to do with the overall terms.  Incensed they suggested they would talk to their broker about the situation, as their buyer obviously should have gotten the home.

Buyers and their agents need to realize what they may perceive as their highest and best offer may not always be the one selected.  Is an offer well above list price and with multiple contingencies better than a offer with no appraisal contingency?  Is a cash offer lower than list price with a quick closing better than one above list price with a FHA loan?  You can combine multiple scenarios and find that highest and best don’t always go together.

When I sit down with my sellers to review offers I remind them it isn’t always about just the sales price but the total contract.  If a deal looks shaky on paper then chances are no matter how many stars you get in your eyes from the price the deal won’t be worth the stress it causes.

In the current Northern Virginia market where multiple offers are a common make sure you are making your best offer.   Remember that HIGHEST isn’t always the BEST offer.





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Comment balloon 3 commentsTerrie Leighton • February 25 2010 04:13PM


Thanks for clearing that up.  Some people think that the highest offer is the best offer.  Not always so.  A lower offer with less contingencies i almost better than a higher offer with many contingencies.

Have a great day


Posted by Leander McClain, Cecil & Harford County Realtor about 9 years ago

I saw this post on Cindy's blog and thought it was very well written. I can see why you chose to re-blog it Terrie.

All the terms on a contract must be considered before acceptance is conveyed. And, like Cindy mentioned, highers and best are not synonymous


Posted by Craig Rutman, Raleigh, Cary, Apex area Realtor (Helping people in transition) about 9 years ago

Terrie, it amazes me on how listing agent will place a description which is border line deceptive trade practice.  Bring all offers.  Have a fabulous weekend.Dallas Apartment Locator,, Dallas Aparment Finder, Dallas Apartments for Rent, Dallas Apartment Rentals

Posted by ~ Dallas Real Estate Agent Top Team (Dallas Houses for Rent Dallas Apartment Rentals ) about 9 years ago

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