Buyer Offers $50K for Other Buyer to Walk Away

A man and woman stand in an open-format kitchen in a home, with a toddler running playfully in front of them.

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Housing inventories are tight, and desperate buyers are going to desperate extremes.

Home buyers continue to submit offers well above asking price and waive appraisals or inspections to try to win a bidding war. But some buyers are willing to pay their competition to walk away.

A real estate pro in Dallas shared with the local ABC-TV channel, WFAA, that a buyer recently tried to do just that on a deal he was working on. Todd Tramonte, a real estate professional in Dallas, was selling a home for a homeowner that had a buyer under contract. But another buyer then swooped in to offer the original buyer up to $50,000 to walk away from the property and contract.

“They said they would give them $50K to go away so they could buy the house,” Tramonte told the local news channel. “The buyer turned down the offer, and there’s some complexity as to if someone can legally or ethically do that, but that’s a real story … it happened.”

Tramonte also made headlines last year when his buyers were offering up cruise trips to sellers to entice them to choose their offer in bidding wars.

Markets are seeing fierce competition among home buyers, and Dallas has become notorious for it. Courtney Michalek, a real estate pro in Dallas with Iconic Real Estate, told WFAA that she submitted at least seven offers over the past week that were all over asking price. Yet, her buyers still hadn’t heard back. “It’s absolutely wild,” Michalek says. “I have to reach out again and again just to get an acknowledgment of an offer that’s $50,000 above the asking price.”

To win in a bidding war, buyers who offered an all-cash transaction were four times more likely to win in a competitive offer situation than those who didn’t in 2021, according to a newly released report from Redfin. All-cash offers were found to be significantly more successful than other strategies, such as waiving the financing contingency or a pre-inspection.