7 Bidding War Battle Strategies From Expert Real Estate Agents

Photograph by Marco Ricca – From the NYC&G October 2018 issue

This year has seen many bidding wars, including one that led to the sale of the late, legendary architect I.M. Pei’s Manhattan home. With the word “war” in the name itself, it’s no surprise this can be an overwhelming and intimidating experience.

So, for the recently-released New York Design Guide 2022 (get your copy here!), the editors of NYC&G chatted with top real estate agents to uncover their best tips for navigating these situations with success.

Park Avenue Traditional modern Apartment Living Room

Photograph by Stephen Karlisch – From the NYC&G March 2020 issue

1. “Let the seller know that you are ready to close and go into contract immediately—with an all-cash offer, if possible.” —Julie Johnson, Core

2. “If you are serious, at least put in an offer, which doesn’t mean anything until you are in contract and have put in a deposit. It’s totally okay to pull out of the deal.” —Jessica Chestler, Douglas Elliman Real Estate

3. “Ask yourself what you are willing to lose it for. If a place is asking $5 million, are you going to be mad if you could have had it for another $20,000 more?” —Ben Jacobs, Douglas Elliman Real Estate

Photograph by Peter Murdock – From the NYC&G September 2019 issue

4. “Put in a strong offer initially. If you come in too low, you might insult the seller.” —Julie Johnson, Core

5. “If a hot-ticket listing comes on the market, be the first in line and go big.” —Joanna Rizoulis, Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty

6. “Have all your cards lined up. Get pre-approved and make the strongest offer you can, knowing that it’s a seller’s market and you do not have much power.” —Ryan Serhant, SERHANT.

7. “Don’t let emotions get the best of you. Be logical, and don’t overpay.” —Vickey Barron, Compass