Receiving an offer to buy your home can make you jump for joy, especially if the listing has been active for a long period. But it's not time to break out the champagne just yet, nor is it time to do a handful of things that you might be tempted to do once an offer is submitted. The reality is that even when there's an offer on the table, several different factors can derail it — and leave you looking for a prospective buyer once again. Here are some things to avoid doing after you get your initial offer.
Take Down Your Lawn Sign
Don't be in a hurry to run outside and pull out the For Sale sign from your front lawn. Even with an offer in your hands, the home is technically still for sale. The last thing you want is for someone who may have an interest in the listing to avoid contacting your listing agent because he or she believes the property has sold. If you leave your lawn sign in place and someone does indeed contact your agent, he or she can explain that there's an offer on the table, but see if the prospective buyer has a better offer.
Cancel Your Open Houses And Showings
If you have an open house and/or some showings scheduled at the time that you receive the offer, it's a good idea to honor them. An open house can get multiple buyers interested in your home, while a showing can make a semi-interested buyer keen on submitting an offer. Remember, the current offer that you have in your hands may fall through, so canceling an open house and any scheduled showings could limit your ability to receive another offer in the short term.
Stop Publicizing Your Listing On Social Media
If you've been actively using social media to keep people interested in your listing — perhaps providing updates with photos — you shouldn't cease doing so just because you've received an offer. If you stop providing these updates or, worse, tell people that there's an offer on the home, this may terminate any interest from your social media contacts. You never know who may be enjoying your posts and preparing to submit an offer — and the wrong approach on your behalf at this time can turn this person to another local real estate for sale listing. It's a good idea to always wait until your home has officially sold before you do any of the above things.