Are you looking to buy the home of your dreams but you keep getting caught in bidding wars? Or are you an investor that just can't get an offer accepted? Then keep reading! In my travels, I consistently come across people who talk about how the market has dried up. "There aren't any good deals out there" they say but there are tons of deals out there! Here are ten tips you can use when writing offers to stand out. These can be used for your "forever" home or an investment property.
We had 120 buyers come to the open house when we listed this property! The competition was tough.
Here's how you stand out!
1: Price your offer as aggressively as possible. If you love the home, can afford it, and it's going to be your primary residence, be aggressive! If this a distressed property and you know it's going to be an investor battle, don't low ball the seller or agent. This industry is a numbers game so be competitive and know your numbers.
2: Show a legitimate pre-approval letter or proof of funds when you write you offer. You shouldn't write an offer until you know exactly how much you can afford.
3: Make your offers only good for 24 hours. Putting a seller on a shot clock will quickly get you a "yes" or a "no". A "no" is better than a maybe because you can move on to the next property without having to wait around for an answer.
4: Cash offers closes faster. Obviously this won't apply for everyone, but if you don't have a mortgage contingency, the sellers will appreciate your offer.
5: This is my favorite, so pay attention. If you haven't signed an agreement to work exclusively with a buyer's agent, look for properties online. Sites like Realtor and Zillow are very current on properties that are listed on the MLS. MLS stands for Multiple Listing Service; it's what agents use to quickly look up properties. Call the listing agents for properties that you are interested in and offer them the opportunity to represent you: this means they will get both sides of the commission if they write your offer. This is one of the best ways to get a listing agent to like you. We wrote 20-30 offers a week with this strategy... And it works!
6: Offer to pay the seller's closing costs if you can afford to. That's a nice $3-$5k in savings for the seller, and may be enough to push you through!
7: Offer a larger earnest money deposit with your offer. A $5,000 earnest money deposit stands out compared to a $500-$1,000 earnest money deposit. Your check won't be deposited until they agree to your offer. So you can write a ton of offers and when one sticks, you can write the earnest money check.
8: Offer to close on the seller's timeline. Sometimes they need to move out fast or they need to move out slow. If you can be flexible, it may work to your advantage.
9: Offer to pay for a moving/clean out crew with your offer. Moving is stressful and helping to eliminated that headache will help you stand out.
10: Shorten your inspection contingency. An inspection contingency provides the buyer the option to back out or re-negotiate the deal if they find issues with the house. Plan ahead and have inspectors or contractors on call to come out. Many agents write 14-30 day inspection contingencies; that's a long time for a seller to not know if the deal is going through. If you can get them an answer in 7 days or less, you have a much stronger offer.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. As usual, please share, comment and re-post. You are now prepared to write a strong offer!