There has been much controversy over a counter offer. Some
say that once a contract is altered, such as a price scratched
out and a counter offer is put in it's place, that the original
offer is no longer valid.
I prefer to make counter offers on a separate agreement. Once
it paid off. When one party balked at a counter offer, and subsequently
tried to walk away from the table all together, I produced his
original offer and said we will stick with this one and accept
it as is.
Had we changed his offer, we may very well have lost the entire
A California Superior Court Judge (name on file)
went so far as to address the California Department of Real Estate.
- "It has come to my attention that there is a widespread
practice amongst Realtors which I think is inappropriate and
which may or may not have come to your notice. Agreements of
sale and receipts are taken on regularly printed forms, duly
signed by the proposed buyer. Then, if changes are proposed by
the seller, terms are scratched out by the broker or salesman
and these are initialed by the seller. This is supposed to constitute
a counter-proposal of some kind."
- "Rather obviously, the program indicated is productive
of controversy as to who made which changes. Furthermore, it
is undoubtedly forgery to change the text above the signature
of the intended buyer. I have told some people here that the
counter-proposal should be in a separate document - on the back
of the deposit receipt or elsewhere. However I think the practice
is very widespread and requires some directive from you."
Excerpt from the Department of Real Estate Deputy's
- "We can recall no instance where the actions of the
broker or salesman as outlined in your letter have been brought
to our attention. The matter is a serious one and we will
do everything to stop such a practice."
A counter offer may be much easier. Reference to the offer
and the basic elements of a contract.