Ok… so you’re a buyer in a sizzling hot seller’s market. You’re one of many, competing over the lowest number of homes we’ve seen in years! Read the tips below, and throw on some sunscreen; we don’t want you to get burned…
1. Work with a great agent from day one. You’ll want (actually, you’ll need) an agent who is ambitious and knowledgeable enough to discern what is important to both you AND the seller. Moreover, you’ll need an agent who understands the local market in every respect, and is willing to uncover what is necessary to write a highly competitive offer. Need help finding an agent?
2. Prepare, prepare, prepare. It’s moving fast out there… that means you have to be prepared. Sellers want buyers who can back up their offers; these are buyers who can insure the deal won’t fall through, buyers who are organized and have a plan. They have a pre-determined, competitive offer range relative to their budget, they tend to be pre-approved, and basically have their service providers (such as attorneys and inspectors) on speed dial!
3. Don’t wait until the weekend. I know you have work, and school, and kids to manage during the weekdays, but seriously…if a home you like with a price you love hits the market Tuesday, don’t risk the wait. It will most likely be gone by the end of the week, or even the end of the day! In this market, you have to respond fast. Drop your other appointments, call a babysitter, and race over to that house.
4. Sell yourself, not just your offer. Yes, the dollar amount and your degree of preparedness are probably the most important factors of any offer, but it’s not the only thing that will keep you at the top of a seller’s mind. Create an emotional appeal by supplementing your proposal with a personal letter. A lot of sellers are extremely attached to their homes and want to see it go to someone who will care for their property in the same way and who will benefit the most from it.
5. Anticipate disappointment. In a seller’s market you’ll more than likely receive a rejection or two…or three… but don’t let that discourage you! It doesn’t mean you’ll never get the home you want and that you should just give up; it means you need to keep pushing, expand your horizons, or reevaluate your strategy.