In the Austin market, there are pockets where a home at the right price will be under contract in a day, or two, or three. Happens all the time- far more buyers than sellers= higher prices and fewer houses to buy.
If you, as a buyer, can’t be the winning offer that gets the signed, executed contract, then you can try for second-best. Here’s what you do: you tell your REALTOR® that you want to submit a back up offer, just in case the accepted offer falls through. Your REALTOR® will call the listing agent to make sure the seller is/ still is accepting back up offers. If so, then everything is done exactly like a first offer, except there is an ‘Addendum for “Back-up” Contract’ attached.
The gist of the addendum is that the signed, agreed-upon back-up contract is not in force, unless the first-place contract ‘falls through’ for some reason. At that point, the second-string goes out onto the field to play ball, becoming the first-string in the process. That would be you.
Once the back-up offer is accepted and signed, you still shouldn’t hold your breath, waiting, because your transaction is probably not gonna happen. However…. every once in awhile…. it does (!), and you feel like everything’s coming up roses.