Ways to Make Your Offer Stand Out
I’m sure you have heard it over and over again, but we are currently in a sellers’ market. What does that mean for buyers? This means that buyers need to be 110% prepared to come in with their highest & best offer on the home that they love. Here are a few easy ways you can make your offer stand out when competing against multiple other offers.
Offer Above Asking: This one may seem like a no-brainer. Sellers want top-dollar for their home. But don’t overdo it. Get with your agent and have them show you the current market value of the home and try to keep it in that range.
Demonstrate Solid Financing: Sellers are more likely to accept an offer when there is proof that the buyers have solid financing. Truth is, no one gets paid if a sale falls through. That is why sellers are more likely to choose an offer that has a high probability of closing. In a perfect world, the best way to do this is to pay all cash. In an all-cash sale, there is essentially a 0% chance that the deal will fall apart due to financing. Realistically, most buyers aren't able to pay cash for a home, so fortunately there are other ways to demonstrate solid financing. The easiest way to do this is to get pre-approved with a lender and submit the preapproval letter when you submit the offer. This tells the sellers that a lender has approved you for the amount that you are offering.
Keep It Simple: Submitting a complicated offer with lots of contingencies and additional terms may in turn confuse the seller. They are more likely to accept the offer that is clear-cut and easy to understand what you are asking for.
Pay Your Own Closing Costs (& Maybe Even a Little of the Sellers’): Do not ask for closing costs! This is a big no no in this market. Sellers don’t want to pay for more than they have to. If you can, even offer to pay some of their closing costs.
Offer a Week (or more) Rent Free: Sellers are often going through a lot of stress when selling their home, one way to alleviate some stress is to offer them to stay in the home (rent free) for a week (or more) after closing. This will give them some extra time to move their things out of the home.
Shorter Inspection Period: The quicker you can get inspections done and move forward with the sale, the better. But don’t overdo it, you still want to make sure you have enough time to do the inspections that are important to you.
Bump Up the Earnest Money: Offer a higher amount of money for your deposit. This will show sellers that you are serious about purchasing their home.
Avoid Asking for Personal Property: Here comes my favorite term, “Less is Best.” The less you ask for the better. Don’t go asking for the seller's couch or washer and dryer unless they specifically state they are willing to leave it with the home. Most sellers don’t want to go out and purchase new furniture and appliances.
Base Your Offer on Seller’s Priorities: With the help of your agent, find out what is important to sellers. Is it a specific title company or closing date? Whatever it may be, write your offer accordingly.
Cover Appraisal Gap: As you may or may not know, the bank will only lend you money based on the appraised value of the home. So, if the appraisal comes back lower than your offer price, offer to pay the gap. But protect yourself as well, set a limit!
Use a full-time, professional REALTOR®: Last but not least, work with a buyers’ agent who has knowledge and expertise of the current market and can write winning offers.