Multiple offers and the 48 hour clause

Multiple offers and the 48 hour clause

Two of the more common questions REIWA agents get asked are; ‘what happens when there are multiple offers on a property?’ and ‘what is the 48 hour clause?’.

Let’s look at these separately.

Multiple offers

When a seller finds themselves in the envious position of having more than one offer on their property for sale, there is no right or wrong procedure for dealing with this.

Nor is there any law as to how this should be handled. It is up to the seller, in consultation with their agent, to decide how to move forward.

It is always a seller’s right to assume any offer received is the buyer’s best offer.

If you’ve placed an offer on the home and the seller has several offers to consider, they will probably ask the agent to inform you that there are multiple offers. You will then be given the opportunity to reconsider and present your best offer.

Alternatively, the seller might decide to only negotiate with one of the offers. Their decision isn’t always the highest price, sometimes the least complicated offer is the more attractive.

48 hour clause

The 48 hour clause, now more properly known as the Two Business Day Condition, is a separate issue you may come across.

This clause is inserted if you are making an offer that is conditional upon the sale of your existing property, but the seller wants to continue marketing their property in the hope of receiving an unconditional offer.

With the 48 hour clause, the seller has the right to continue advertising their property and to negotiate with a potential second buyer.

If the seller receives an alternative offer they wish to accept, they must notify you of this.

You would then have two business days to secure an alternative source of finance or obtain a contract for the sale of their existing property.

If you do not waive the condition before the two days are up, then the contract comes to an end and your deposit will be returned. The seller is then able to enter into a contract with the alternative buyer.

REIWA provides a standard Two Business Day clause for its members to use, however we strongly encourage buyers and sellers to fully understand the terms and conditions before agreeing to it.