Recently, I’ve been involved in several multiple offer situations with my buyers. Each time is an opportunity for my clients to become happy homeowners or one step closer to having the life completely sucked out of them. Here are strategies that buyers can use to try to get that dream home without giving away the house. Hold it……you can’t give away something that you don’t have yet. Focus…. O.K. back to multiple offers strategies for buyers.
When a property comes on the market, immediately contact the listing agent or homeowner (if they are representing themselves) and ask when offers will be addressed. Will they take a pre-emptive offer? A pre-emptive offer is just that, pre-empting the offer process by attempting to get your offer ratified before the rest of the real estate world wakes up. It appears that some agents (funny, it always appears to be the same agents) list homes that are priced way below the recent sales comparables. This usaully happens in an appreciating market. This also ensures a multiple offer situation. Hmm … mighty suspicious. I find it odd that, even if the Seller would take an offer immediately, the Seller has gone on vacation and/or had to visit their dying aunt and/or they themselves have just passed away and the executor is unavailable.
Get pre-approved on your loan prior to looking. Its pretty basic stuff. But you would be surprise that even today, many buyers assume that since they checked their credit online and were told that they could get a loan, they were good to go. They were “pre-qualified and would work out the details” once they found the ideal home. Well, after losing their first “perfect” home to stupidity, having a loan committment from a reliable lender is starting to sink in.
99% of all local listings will have some sort of disclosure package about the property available to prospective buyers. READ IT and SIGN IT!! It should include the mandatory disclosure documents as well as a property inspection and termite inspection. Additional inspections may also be included. If anything looks odd or you don’t understand anything, have it checked out by professionals. “But Dave, offers are in two days. We don’t have the time…we work.” This typically is the largest investment that one will ever make. Make the time. At least contact the inspectors, call the city, verify school attendance boundaries (which are changing as I type), check the Meagan’s law website (if you dare). Remember to check about the home’s current condition as well as for future use. Do you plan on building a two story? If so, is the home in a single story overlay zone? Does the C, C,& R’s restrict two stories? What are the design and building codes? Find out as much as you can before you commit your money.
Next time …… part 2 Packaging the offer.