This question is related to the halachic concept of ani hamehapech b'charara, or tortious interference, which I happened to just come across in studying Mishnah Peah.

If one has been looking at a house and is ready to make an offer, and the agent tells him that someone else (who happens to also be Jewish) has already put in a bid that is likely to be accepted unless a better offer is made, is one halachically allowed to put in a competing bid?

I found this http://www.torah.org/advanced/business-halacha/5757/vol2no35.html which has a lot of information about the halacha of ani hamehapech b'charara. In regard to answer D, the second bidder would theoretically not be able to find a similar property for sale, at least in that community. In terms of answer E, the house is still publicly listed as for sale, but it's not as if the seller approached the second potential buyer, except for the seller's agent encouraging the offer once he expressed interest in making a bid.

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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Dave, and thanks for the interesting question! Hope to see you around.
    – Scimonster
    Dec 26, 2014 at 13:28
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    I spoke to my LOR and he told me that ani hamehapech b'charara doesn't apply because the house is still for sale and that's the way things normally work, that different people can offer bids while it's still for sale. He said the din would only apply in this case if it was already a done deal. (Mods please feel free to delete this question if it's now irrelevant).
    – Dave S
    Dec 26, 2014 at 16:26
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    @DaveS instead of deleting the question, how about turning that into an answer to help the next person who has this question? (If your LOR is willing to be named, or if you can report the sources he used, that'd be even stronger.) Dec 26, 2014 at 18:22
  • @DaveS - please make that an answer - but what t about the case of the original bidder having halachic precedence, like a Bar Metzra? (i.e. a close neighbor). Jan 31, 2018 at 10:55


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