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Ask the Expert: What Can I Do If My First Offer was Rejected

Putting an offer in on your dream home is always an exciting experience. But, unfortunately sometimes, your first offer won’t be accepted by the homeowner. So… then what? As a first time home buyer, what should you do? For a lot of us, it’s hard to know the answer to that question.

If you’re a first-time homebuyer this post is for you! We want to help clear the confusion that often occurs when putting an offer on a home. Today, we are going to discuss the possible outcomes that happen when a first offer is rejected. Spoiler alert: it isn’t always bad.

So if you’re ready, let’s get started now.


Basically, when you put an offer on a house, there are two possible outcomes:

  1. The homeowner accepts, OR
  2. The homeowner denies

Now, this is where the home buying process becomes a bit of a “choose your own adventure”. Let’s discuss what happens with each of these outcomes now.

To begin, if your offer is accepted, you will go through a series of steps to finalize the process. But that’s for another blog post… Just know that if your first offer is accepted, you will be on the path for signing paperwork, getting keys and celebrating!

However, if your offer isn’t accepted there are a few possible options for you.

Option #1: Negotiate

Most of the time, if your offer isn’t accepted, it will come back with a counter-offer. This means that the homeowners are willing to work with you to arrange a deal, but they have a few stipulations. As the buyer, the ball is now in your court. You can decide if you want to accept their counter-offer or you can make your own counter-offer.

If you accept their offer as it is, you will go into the next phase of the process, which is home inspections, loan verification with your mortgage lender and more legal paperwork.

If you decide to counter-off, your realtor will help you draw up some paperwork to send back to the homeowner outlining your new offer. The homeowners will then have the option to either accept or decline your offer.

Option 2: Walk Away

If your offer is declined, you also have the option to walk away from the deal. For a lot of homebuyers, this isn’t always an easy option. But, over the years, we have seen an interesting pattern arise in homeowners who have been rejected from offers and walk away…. they end up finding a home they like way better. It isn’t always an easy option: to walk away. But honestly, in the end, it can often be serendipitous.

If you choose to walk away from a home because your offer is rejected, try not to lose hope. There are always more homes to see. You never know what is out there. So, try and be positive, despite the loss.

As realtors in Byron Center we have seen many families move on from their original offers and find beautiful homes in amazing neighborhoods. One small defeat does not necessarily mean the end of the game for you.

If you’re looking for a home in the Grand Rapids area and need help maneuvering the home buying process, make sure that you reach out to us. We are determined to help homebuyers find the homes they LOVE, get settled and begin a wonderful new chapter in their life.

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