When you are looking to purchase a home in a seller’s real estate market, preparation is key. I would also suggest the same in a buyer’s market, because you still want your offer to stand out above the rest. First step is proof of financing or cash at hand. You might want to look first, get a feel, compare…but that can all be done online. When you contact an Agent for Representation or a Seller to view a home, you need to be committed.
A seller who receives an offer with earnest money deposit and pre-approval/proof of funds knows the buyer is serious and ready. Anything less is just wasted time for all involved. Sellers want to see that commitment; they want to know the offer is worthy of taking the home off the market. Usually, the standard of an earnest money deposit is 1% of the offer price. Bring that amount up and it shows confidence. Also, remember a Seller’s market is a numbers game. Have your Agent show you what similar homes in the area have recently sold for (and at percentage of list price) and use these numbers to back up your offer if necessary. It’s easy to get emotionally involved in purchasing real estate, but you need to weigh in the facts. If the home is absolutely perfect, how far are you willing to go?
So, now you are pre-approved and have your earnest money saved up….now what? Get-an-Agent! All agents have the information at hand to make an educated offer and save you the time and heartaches of ‘losing an offer,’ but the consumer should be weary of any information that is not provided directly by the local MLS (Multi-List Database where agents share their listings). Anything else may not be reliable or up-to-date. A great agent knows how to execute and negotiate the offer, sell the high points and speak with the listing agent. They understand the contract inside and out and the fees that can be negotiated. Lack of knowledge in this instance could cost you money or the home of your choice. Agents also hold power in sharing office listings BEFORE they hit the market. In most cases, buyer representation is no cost to you!
So, don’t sell yourself short. Be smart and let the professional take care of the details. Would you represent yourself in court? This is potentially the biggest investment (both financially and familial) of your life. When purchasing a home, especially in a Seller’s market, do it smart.
Even if you’re not what we call “pre-qualified” with a letter from a banker that says you’re ready, give us a call. We also know some financial professionals that can move you towards the next step.
Are you ready to sell? Let us know!
Photo credit: lukejones