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Posts: 1
Registered: ‎11-28-2012

I am the #1 Backup Offer. Can the sellers take longer than stated or accept another offer? Now what?



11-7-2012 I submitted an offer to purchase a standard sale house in CA.  They did not accept my initial offer but they accepted & signed my backup offer, specifically stating that I am “placed in first position as a back up offer”. 


* By the way, the selling agent and her husband own the home she is selling. *


Per an 11-16 e-mail from the selling agent/owner, she said that the contingencies from the original offer will be removed 11-23-2012 and that she “will make sure that they follow through with that deadline”.  However, today is the 28th – 5 days after the contingencies should have been removed – and we still have heard nothing from her after repeated attempts to contact her. 



  • Do I have any recourse to pursue the purchase of this home or could I be waiting around for months if they choose?  Because there is no drop-dead date on my backup offer, I have the feeling that I’m out of luck.  At the same time, the selling agent and owner, who are one and the same, sent an e-mail stating that the contingencies will be removed 11/23.
  • The CA market is really hot right now and I wouldn’t be surprised if they received a better backup offer after accepting mine.  Is there any way to determine if they’ve accepted another offer?
  • Should I report her to her employer or is that out of line?
  • Any suggestions?


Thanks so much!

Posts: 7
Registered: ‎11-23-2012

Re: I am the #1 Backup Offer. Can the sellers take longer than stated or accept another offer? Now w

My advice to you is to run fast.  I wouldn't buy a home where the seller is also the agent.  They know the game too well, so you'll end up paying more for the home than it's worth.  This isn't a bad thing if you really want the home and you're ok with the price, but the agent isn't being professional, which isn't unusual right now.  If they're more than likely keeping it up to get more offers.  If they wanted to sell you the home at the price you offered, they would be selling it to you - but they're not.  They're playing with you - so I would move on and let them play the game with someone else.

Redfin Partner Agent
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎10-26-2011

Re: I am the #1 Backup Offer. Can the sellers take longer than stated or accept another offer? Now w

[ Edited ]

Hi "ks92625"  


Sorry to hear about your roller coaster ride.  Here are my thoughts to your questions - 


  • Question ONE (PART I) If it is an accepted / executed offer, you "may" have a binding contract. I suggest that you seek legal help to determine your status with this part of the question.  (PART II) Waiting around for months?  I would move on to another property.  (PART III) Contingencies removed 11/23.  If you're 'back up' this shouldn't matter.  Have you given them money for initial deposit?
  • Question TWO (PART I) You're probably correct.  Agent/Owners look at the bottom line and the pocket book so they are probably fishing for a higher offer.  (PART II) Look on and see if the property is active or not.  
  • Question THREE - Wouldn't hurt to contact the Broker on record.  However, if she is the Broker / Owner of the company or is selling "For Sale By Owner" then there are other options.
  • Question FOUR - Be weary of Agent / Owners.  Find an agent to help you search for a home.  

Good Luck!  


Niel Mamerto, Redfin Partner Agent - San Diego

Niel Mamerto | Redfin Partner Agent
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