A final offer, also known as a best and final offer, is a negotiation tactic in which a party submits an offer on a take-it-or-leave-it basis. This means that the offer is presented as the final offer that will be made or accepted, and no further negotiation will take place. Final offers are often used in situations where the parties have reached an impasse and are unable to come to an agreement through further negotiation. By presenting a final offer, the party is attempting to put pressure on the other party to accept the offer, or risk losing the opportunity to reach a deal. Final offers can be effective in resolving negotiations, but they can also create tension and may not be suitable in all situations. The following are illustrative examples.
Goods & Services
A customer offers $500 for an antique. The sales person claims there is no way their manager would approve a price that low. The sales person requests the customer think about it and submit a final offer closer to $3500 before the item is sold to another customer. This puts the customer in a corner as the sales person is suggesting they will only accept one more bid that needs to be much higher.
Multiple buyers have submitted bids for a home. The seller requests all buyers to submit a best and final offer within three days. This prevents an incremental bidding war where each of the buyers can discover exactly how high the other bidders are willing to go. When each bidder is only allowed to make one more bid, they may bid high as they have great uncertainty about how high the competition will bid. This may work to the sellers advantage if they are confident the buyers are motivated to win the bid. Otherwise, bidders may simply resubmit their most recent bid as final.
An employer offers a candidate a salary of $90,000 despite a recent salary history of $140,000. The candidate claims they will not accept a salary under $140,000. The human resources representative claims it is very unlikely this would be approved as it is out of the range for the position. They ask the candidate to submit a final offer for the lowest salary they would accept. The candidate submits $140,000 as they feel the employer is bluffing and is willing to match their previous salary. This bid indicates the candidate will have to walk away from the offer if their salary demand is not met.
Trade agreement negotiations hit a sticking point on the tariff rate for information technology services. One side claims a proposed rate of 25% is untenable and asks the other side to come back with a final proposal closer to 0% if they are serious about closing the deal.