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Deadlines in Arizona Real Estate


Set a Deadline for Your Advantage

When it comes to Arizona real estate contracts, time is of the essence.  Often, placing time constraints on your offer works to your advantage.

Ever seen a charity telethon?  It’s not unusual to see 90 percent of the donations generated in the last half hour.  In the last few moments, just before the telethon ends, the money rolls in.  In sports, the game is often decided within the last few minutes. The two-minute drill in basketball or the two-minute warning in football, often results in a game winning final basket or field goal?

The same applies to getting sellers to accept your offer for any Arizona home for sale. If an acceptance deadline isn’t set, the sellers may simply delay to the point the transaction falls through … even if it's an offer they might otherwise have accepted! Buyers may underestimate the importance of restricting the seller’s time to accept.  Remember that a giving a lengthy deadline commits you, while the seller takes their time to either accept, reject or counter your offer. Setting a strict deadline, forces the sellers to act or risk losing a potential buyer. By countering or accepting your offer, they will be "locked in", preventing other buyers from offering competing bids.

How Much Time Should You Give the Sellers?

The question now becomes, how much time should the sellers be given? Since decisions typically require the coordination of several individuals, allowing until midnight of the same day is common.  By doing this, the sellers must seriously consider your offer or risk losing a potential buyer. When it is difficult to get the sellers together all at once, because of vacations, business trips, etc., 24 hours is reasonable.  In the age of cell phones, email, and next day delivery, there is no excuse for taking longer than a day to decide.  Sellers who are serious, will avail themselves to consider an offer.

Seller’s Agent Insisting on More Time

Some seller’s agents may hesitate to place pressure on their clients and insist on more time, suggesting that it's impolite to dictate such a short deadline, or that a “weak offer” demands more time for the sellers to “think about it.”  Whatever the reason, stick to your guns and force a strict deadline for action on the offer.  Since buying/selling a house is serious business, sellers shouldn’t be offended by any offer presented and be should able to respond to an offer within a reasonable time frame. 

Remember, barring a true emergency, the seller’s only motivation for postponing a decision on an offer is the hope of a better offer coming along.  This can happen. So, by setting a strict deadline, you minimize the possibility of being outbid.