Can a seller accept another offer if they have given a counteroffer to the buyer?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can a seller accept another offer if they have given a counteroffer to the buyer?

The seller made counteroffer to my original offer but then accepted an offer from another buyer

before the counter to me expired.

Asked on April 29, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, the seller cannot: if a counter offer has some time frame within which to accept it, as you imply, then he *must* wait until the earlier of 1) your rejection of the  counter; 2) your re-countering (which rejects the counter and puts a new offer, from you to him, on the table); or 3) the expiration of the counteroffer's time to accept. You could potentially sue him to stop this sale (if it has not yet closed) and make him sell to you, but bear in mind that you will have to pay your own legal fees to sue, and if the other side fights to the end, they could be considerable.Unless this a uniquely good deal or particualrly special house, it may be better to not enforce your rights and move on to a different potential home.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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