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Sign of (old) times: Multiple bids resurface

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  • | 8:01 a.m. May 11, 2012
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The chatter about multiple bids for home sales making a comeback — so 2004 — is a reality on the Gulf Coast.

At least it was for one recent sale in the Bay Isles community on Longboat Key, where a listing ultimately received 16 offers and sold for $229,000 more than the asking price. Coldwell Banker agent Terrence Cook closed on the sale of the 2,679-square-foot, three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom home March 30. Cook represented the seller of the bank-owned property, which was Deutsche Bank, according to Sarasota County property records.

The sale process started off relatively normal for Cook, who has specialized in bank-owned properties the past few years. But neighbors around the house went into collective shock in mid-February, when he officially listed the property for $472,000.

“They were horrified,” Cook tells Coffee Talk. “They were very upset. They didn't feel like that was an accurate price for the property.”

That scene has played out in communities nationwide, according to several recent news stories. A front-page Wall Street Journal story on April 27, for example, documented multiple cases of multiple bids, including some instances in Florida. Some local residential brokers say multiple bids, a sign that overall prices could be on the rise, have been happening more for homes in the $100,000 and under price range. That's usually the domain of investors. Other brokers have seen it happen in the $300,000 price range.

In Cook's case, he says the client set the price based on its own appraisal process. He had little say in it. The aggressively low price worked, though, because bids came in fast, says Cook. Within three days, he had more than a dozen offers. Nearly all were cash. Says Cook: “It was like doing eBay.”

The bank asked Cook to send out a request for “best and final” offers from all 16 bidders. The best and highest one came in two days later, at the $702,000 price. The buyers are Donald and Roberta Doyle of Louisville, Ky., according to the Sarasota County Property Appraiser. Coldwell Banker agent Bruce Myer represented the buyers.

The 2,679-square-foot, three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom home in Longboat Key that sold for $229,000 more than the asking price.


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