If you’re thinking of buying a home in Port Liberte, you might hear the term “seller’s market” tossed around… and wonder just what it means. In short, a “seller’s market” tends to favor sellers, which typically means inventory is low (fewer homes to choose from) and prices are high. For a home buyer, this translates to: competition.
But before you throw in the towel and give up the search, don’t despair! There’s hope for you as a homebuyer. Here’s how to stand out from the competition as a buyer in a competitive seller’s market.
Get Preapproved for a Loan
Don’t even consider making an offer if you haven’t spoken with a lender and gotten preapproved for a mortgage. If another offer comes in at the same time from a preapproved buyer, you can bet the seller will pick that one over yours—after all, a preapproved buyer has already shown they’re able to qualify for enough loan to cover the price of the home.
Getting preapproved is pretty easy, and you can do it right from the comfort of your home. Simply pick up the phone and start calling lenders. They’ll go over some details of your financial situation and likely ask you to fax or scan over some supporting documentation. It might take a few days, but you’ll quickly have a response from the lender letting you know whether you’ll qualify—and how much you’ll qualify for.
Getting preapproved also allows you to discuss loan options with various lenders, and can help you determine how much you’ll be paying per month for homes at different price ranges. And you have no obligation to the lender if they preapprove you; you’re free to walk away at any time.
Be Prepared to Move Quickly
See a home you love? Don’t hesitate to put in an offer, because you never know who else is loving that same home. It’s also a good idea to ask the seller what their ideal closing and moving timeframe looks like; a seller eager to move out might be more willing to accept an offer from a buyer who can make that happen ASAP than a buyer who wants to close in six months.
Show the seller you’re serious by setting the home inspection within five days of the offer’s acceptance.
While it’s always a good idea to have some contingencies in place—like a home inspection or financing contingency—to make an offer more appealing, you’ll want to keep contingencies to a bare minimum.
For example, with a home inspection, you might include an “as is” contingency—this means if the home has some issues, you can still walk away, but you won’t be able to ask the seller for repairs if you move forward.
Consider a Cash Offer
If you’ve got the ability to make a cash offer, do it. Nothing’s more appealing to a home seller than a cash offer—especially a seller looking to move fast. Not only does a cash offer eliminate the need for a financing contingency and appraisal, it eliminates the entire mortgage approval process, which is usually pretty lengthy and can still fall through, even on promising buyers.
Cash offers are always safer for sellers to accept, and coupled with their speedier closing process, may even be more appealing to a seller than a higher offer with mortgage strings attached.
Write a Buyer’s Letter
Buying and selling real estate is a financial transaction… but we’d be lying if we said it wasn’t also a very human and often very emotional process as well. That being said, there’s some merit to appealing to a seller as a human being, person-to-person, rather than just as a number behind a dollar sign.
Simply put, a buyer’s letter is a way to explain your motives to the seller and to try and connect with them a little bit. Tell them why you like the neighborhood and their home. Give a little back story, tell them how you can see your life unfolding in their home. Will it work for every seller? Absolutely not. But sellers who’ve lived in their homes a long time may feel better about selling to a person, rather than a number.
Bottom line: it’s worth a little extra time to try and appeal to the home seller on a more personal level.
Thinking of Buying a Home in Port Liberte?
If you’re thinking of buying a home in Port Liberte, then it’s time to contact Century 21 Viewpoint Realty. We’re here to help you explore the area, discover its fantastic community, and find the perfect home for your unique needs.