Let’s say you’ve found the apartment of your dreams, but there are other offers on the table. How might that situation play out for you, and how much time before you know if your offer has been accepted?
In most cases, other interested buyers will have 48 hours to get their offers in. That’s fairly standard. However, there are actually no laws that limit the open period for offers. In some cases, the multi-offer period can be dragged out for a long time, but the reason for this cannot be deliberately obstructive.
There are four main reasons that a multi-offer period might extend beyond the standard two days.
First, there could be issues around access availability. If the current tenants only allow showings on one or two days a week, for example, other interested buyers may be delayed in visiting the property.
Second, potential purchasers may need to seek legal advice before proceeding. Real estate agents are not allowed to put anyone under undue pressure, and legal advice is a core element of the sales process. That can take a bit of time as well.
In other cases, the vendor may provide instructions that extend the multi-offer period. When offers come in very quickly after an apartment is listed for sale, the vendor could decide to wait it out a bit and see what happens.
Finally, in the case of international buyers, they may have expressed interest but cannot make an official offer until returning home. International buyers are also not available to be contacted whilst in mid-air, so delays can occur if the competing offer is from a foreign purchaser. Agents are required by law to provide an opportunity for them to put in their offer.
If you do feel that an agent is unfairly dragging out the multi-offer situation, remember that you can legally withdraw your offer at any time. Ring the agent to discuss this. They won’t want to lose your business and will let the vendor know your feelings. If your gut sense about the delay is that the deal is shady, withdraw your offer.
Call us at NZ Residential for more information about the multi-offer process.