The Reverse Offer
A controversial move to get negotiations going. Sometimes called the "reverse contract," the reverse offer is the practice of the seller writing a contract and sending it to the buyer, rather than the other way around.
Typically, the contract offers a discount selling price. The tactic is somewhat controversial, but the logic behind using it in situations where you think you have an interested buyer who is dragging his feet on writing an offer might just be the push you need to get negotiations started. Naturally, you can only try this tactic when the seller is willing to drop the price on the listing.
If you have a seller who has gone against your good advice and demanded a high price for their property, a reverse offer may be a tactic to introduce when you feel they're coming to their senses about the overpriced listing. One other potential downside is the advantage it may give the buyer in terms of negotiating further on price. When a seller approaches a buyer with a discounted price, it could send the signal that the seller is desperate or in a weak position.
If you want to try and use a reverse offer with your seller's approval, one way to pitch the idea is to show them how much it might cost them to carry the property an additional 60 days or more. In that time, the property's value may be declining while they're losing out-of-pocket money to pay the mortgage, insurance, etc. It might make the reduced price in a reverse offer seem easier to swallow. Some professionals feel the reverse offer ultimately costs the seller too much, but in a market which demands creative approaches, it's good to keep it in your back pocket for just the right time.