Writing a competitive offer when buying a home allows you to get your offer accepted. The first time.
Having a Realtor on your side who not only knows the local community and its housing market, but also how to help offer you advice on writing a great offer the first time is key.
It’s not just about being the “highest bidder” when writing offers, but rather the bidder who offers a competitive price and places the fewest restrictions on that offer. Think of it this way, as the seller, you prefer to work with less demanding bidders over those who may offer the highest price but have strings attached with the contract. So, when you write your offer with your Realtor’s advice and expertise, you need to do so with the seller in mind…for what they will be most likely to respond to with a “yes.”
So, how can you do this?
First and foremost, rely upon your Realtor for research. What are other similar homes selling for in the area? Your Realtor can pull comps of other homes in the market like the one you want to buy and give you their original list price and for what dollar amount they’ve recently sold. Having these comparative numbers gives you a great starting point for the going rate on homes like the one you’re trying to buy. With that knowledge, your offer will be a solid, substantiated bid.
Be an educated buyer. Know your mortgage pre-qualification. Having the budget in-hand before you write that offer will eliminate the guesswork. Save yourself and the seller the disappointment of a sale that doesn’t close. Use the number you know you can comfortably afford and be sure you don’t raise your bid beyond that comfort zone. This will keep you from having any trouble at the closing table.
What if you’re not the only bidder? Your Realtor will know if there are other offers on the table for the home. When offering a bid with multiple bidders, the sale price of the home will usually be greater than its asking price. Writing a competitive offer is critical in this instance and having your Realtor’s expertise when writing that bid will give you a greater chance of getting that offer accepted.
Appeal to the emotions of the seller. Yes, buying a home is a financial transaction, but it is also an emotional one. The seller is attached to the home, has memories there, has worked to refurbish it and make it what it is today. Likewise, you have an emotional attachment to it…that feeling of “this is the one” when you walk through the front doors. In a competitive market especially, a creative way to add to your offer is to write a personal letter to the seller explaining why you love the home so much, how you see your family living there and give your emotional plea. What you say may just be the push that seller needs to choose your offer.
So, rely upon your Realtor, who spends hours of his or her week in the market knowing the ins and outs of the homes listed, sold and that didn’t sell. Use a number you know you can afford, and is a fair selling price in the market. And, keep in mind that selling and buying a home is an emotional transaction. Get your offer accepted the first time!
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