Blog Alyssa Isenstein Krueger How to Get An Offer Accepted Before An Open House

How to Get An Offer Accepted Before An Open House

By Alyssa Isenstein Krueger, November 23, 2021

Sarah and Tariq contacted me in early August after being referred to me by one of my favorite lenders. They used to live in Portland, and had moved to Los Angeles for work, and were now being transferred back to Portland. They were moving to Portland in mid-November, so they came to Portland in mid-October to find a home. Before they arrived, we had a flurry of emails back and forth narrowing down homes they wanted to see.  They seemed to really hone in on mid-centuries and when we came up with our list of homes to see over the next few days, the majority were mid-centuries.  They arrived on a Thursday evening, and we hit the ground running on Friday morning. We saw around 12 houses together over the next couple of days, and they saw even more homes on their own visiting open houses.

They did write on one home, but when that home received another offer that was higher and waived their inspection, Sarah and Tariq decided they didn’t love it enough to go that far. With 2 days left on their clock, they started leaning towards writing an offer on a house they didn’t love, but felt it met their needs and after buying it, they could fix it up to their liking. They wanted to be under contract before they flew back to LA and I think they were ok with settling for a less than perfect house for the sake of being able to leave Portland having a house under contract.

While they mulled that house over, a house came on the market in North Tabor that seemed like it could be the one. We immediately went and saw it and both Sarah and Tariq just beamed and they knew within 20 steps into the house that this was the one. It had a classic living room with fireplace, formal dining room and vintage kitchen that looked almost brand new. Two bedrooms on the main floor and one up plus a semi-finished basement. The house had a tuck under garage as well as an oversized double car garage behind the house. One of the things that was on their must have list was a garage for their motorcycles, and this house had the perfect set-up for their bikes. They loved it and decided on the spot they would take the home as-is and waive the inspection contingency. The home was an estate and prior to going on the market the seller pro-actively replaced the sewer line, did a radon test and had soil samples taken and the tank decommissioned. The home was a well built 1951 classic with a foundation built like a tank, but I could tell that the roof had at least 3 layers including the original wood shingle roof, it needed plumbing updates, both the furnace and water heater were ancient and the chimney had seen better days. I put together a list for Sarah and Tariq with repair estimates for all the issues based off very recent bids for similar work. After going through those numbers, it all felt pretty manageable budget wise.  They decided they would go the distance to get this house, and the sooner they could get it under contract the better. 99% of the time I would never advise a first time home buyer to waive the home inspection contingency, but in this case it made sense considering the potential big unknowns, sewer and oil tank, were already taken care of and Sarah and Tariq were dying to get the house.

The house was scheduled to have an open house on Sunday, and Sarah and Tariq wanted to get this house under contract before then. We wrote up a great offer that was over asking, waived the right of revocation, ordered the appraisal on day one, did a 26 day close, released the earnest money upon acceptance by the seller and waived the home inspection contingency.  I would never advice a buyer to release their earnest money right away, but they were so sure that this was their house that when they asked what else they could throw in to hopefully get the seller to accept their offer right away, that was the really the only thing left. When we submitted the offer on a Friday night, it was as watertight as could be.

The next day, on Saturday, the listing agent called me and said the seller was so pleased with Sarah and Tariq’s offer, that she decided to accept it  right away and they canceled the open house scheduled for Sunday. Sarah and Tariq flew back to LA on Sunday knowing that when they drove back to Portland in November, they had a house waiting for them. Even though they waived the home inspection contingency, they still had the home inspected so they would be able to prioritize repairs and know what they were getting into. Thankfully the home inspected like a dream, and pretty much everything I said would come up in an inspection as an issue, came up, and overall the house was in terrific shape. The house closed on a Thursday, and on Saturday morning Sarah and Tariq arrived in Portland with their pup a rented mini-van full of plants and the glow that comes with having the satisfaction of getting keys to their dream home.


Alyssa Isenstein Krueger



I am living the dream. Working as a real estate broker in my home town brings this native Portland gal joy beyond measure. I took the round-about-road towards this career. After graduating from Sarah Lawrence College in NY two decades ago with a degree in liberal arts/creative writing, I returned to my hometown of PDX and got a job in a legendary record store of days gone by, worked as a music and culture writer for Portland’s oldest weekly publication while pursuing a graduate degree in Urban and Regional Planning at Portland State University. Armed with my masters degree, I moved into the realm of affordable housing, community development, and urban planning, and then rounded the corner with a long stay in arts management then back around the bend when I got my real estate license and went to work for a non-profit housing builder at the cusp of the market crash in 2007. In the time between that market crash and the ensuing madness, I’ve stayed on top of the market like a dog guarding a bone. Using a magical combination of experience, instinct, and market data, I know what homes are worth, I know how to write a terrific offer, and I know how to help a seller market a home and receive and accept a great offer. Mutual trust and tender relationship building is the basis and foundation of my real estate practice. I use my skills as an active listener, creative solution finder and ace negotiator to get my clients the best price on a home, win the multiple offer roulette, and have as smooth and easy transaction as possible. Timely and responsive communication is the most important aspect of building trust and I don’t take that part lightly.  I am a stickler for details and nothing pleases me more than guiding a client through the home buying or selling process (and sometimes both at the same time). My role is one of advocate, advisor, partner, transaction organizer, and counselor. I am a partner broker with Portland Housing Center and relish the opportunity to work with eager first time home buyers. I have a knack for seeing the potential in almost any home and love to help clients see past what is and help them envision what can be. I have a decade of first-hand experience renovating and caressing my bungalow in Ladd’s Addition and had the honor of having my own home featured in a story in the Oregonian’s Homes and Gardens section. I can feel the love for any and almost all homes, but my heart goes all aflutter when entering a museum quality time capsule house -- the solid mid-century ones with the original pink or green tiled bathrooms, those charming early 1900’s farmhouses with the original kitchen cabinets and fir countertops, the cozy bungalows with the built-ins still intact. When I’m not working with clients, you’ll find me hanging with my two boys, Kalman and Saul, and my husband Robert, a Fine Art Conservator with his own business, Cascadia Art Conservation Center.  Retired racing greyhounds have been my constant companions since 1997, and our family includes Peanut the greyhound, Pinto the South Korean Italian greyhound, and our chickens, Rosie, Lola, Squishy, Duck and Prince. I am an obsessive gardener/plant fiend and love that we live in a climate where I can grow eucalyptus trees (I have 5 in my yard including a couple I started from seed) alongside blueberry bushes (6 in my yard). Given some free time, you’ll find me junking at an estate sale, dreaming of high brow junk, low brow art, making things, sewing, reading and dreaming of tropical locales.
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