Although we haven't seen multiple offers in this Vancouver Real estate market for a very long time, you would be surprised to hear that they might be coming back. I have had reports from other agents in my office that they have been in multiple offer situations in the last few days.
Multiple offers don't have to be a mystery but they are effectively like tying on a blindfold and Buying some real estate.
As a listing agent once you have confirmation that one or more offers are coming in on your listing, the first thing to do is to find the Seller and make an appointment to have the offers presented to them. Offers must be presented in the order that the listing agent receives notification that there is an offer. All offers know how many other offers there are involved in the situation, and whether or not there is another agent representing the Buyer or the listing agent has afforded a Buyer Limited dual agency. No other Buyer or Realtor will ever be told any of the terms or conditions of any of the offers as well as the price. These details must be kept confidential from all of the parties involved.
For example, Sally Seller puts her house on the market. After an afternoon of showings Betty Buyer decides that she would like to put an offer on the Sally's house. Betty's agent prepares the offer and calls Sally's agent. Bobby Buyer has also decided that he would like to write an offer on the house. Bobby's agent prepares an offer and calls Sally's agent. Both Betty's and Bobby's agent now hear that there are two offers coming in on the property and both offers will be presented tonight at 7:00 pm at Sally's house with Sally and her agent present. Betty's offer will be pressented first then Bobby's offer. Betty can not know what price Bobby's offer will be, and she may not even ever find out that Bobby is the person making the offer on the house as well.
In virtually all cases of multiple offers since the Seller has more then one offer, they can pick and choose what works for them. More often then not the offer with the best price and the least conditions or subjects will wins.
As an agent who has been in multiple offers more times then I can even count, representing the Buyer, a good practice is to take my Buyer along and make them sit in my car. This way I know where they are and can find them easily when there are decisions to be made. There is nothing worse then having the listing agent come back and say to me, "your offer is perfect, we just need to change one tiny detail and you have a deal, but where is your Buyer?"
Mulitple offers usually move very quickly and be aware that decisions must be made in very small amounts of time.
Gone are the days, for now, where there were 25 offers on one house and the price was usually bid up and over the initial asking price. But don't expect mulitple offers to become the way of the dinosaur.