Trying To Buy In A Sellers Market

Dated: 01/02/2018

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Trying to Buy In A Sellers Market?

Image titleIn a sellers market, its best for buyers to learn everything they can about the specific area they want to buy in.  For example, school boundaries, freeway access, neighbors, is there a train nearby etc… In a sellers market, sellers usually like to see as many offers as possible to maximize their profits thereby creating a bidding war between buyers.  This is very different from when the market is slow and considered a buyers market. 

Know Your Stuff

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Knowing how to present the offer or what to ask, will make it easier for you in finding the best property in a seller’s market.  If no offers have been submitted, it may indicate the property is possibly overpriced or is rather new in the market, typically under 21 days.  It may also indicate that there is a problem with the home itself or that the home is a great home but maybe the market for that home is much smaller.  For instance, the home is an all glass Eichler in a historic district or maybe it is a 2000’ square foot one bedroom home in the hills.  Not a lot of buyers typically for those. 

However, if you are looking for the typical 3 to 4 bedroom home with a good sized yard for the kiddos and Fido, you will have competition. Needless to say,   this is NOT a time to consider low-balling on home offers.  If you need to move or really really want that home, be ready to work for it.   That is not to say that you need to “over pay”, but you will need to be competitive.

Too Long On The Market? Problem? Maybe Not

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When there are no offers on a particular home, it may allow you to negotiate differently and possibly obtaining a lower price.  Have your Realtor do comps in the area and submit those along with an offer that is reasonable for the area. Sending comps together with your offer shows the sellers the reason behind your offer price on their home. Occasionally sellers set their very own price, even when their agent provides them comps.

Since it's a sellers market and usually very competitive, don't send offers without evidence of proof of funds or an approval letter. I would also suggest a letter about the family and a photo if appropriate.  If you are attempting to buy a family home, some sellers are emotional about the selling of their home and this can make a difference in which offer is accepted.  Without one or all of these items, the odds your offer is accepted will decrease.  In a seller’s market, you want to do everything you can to increase your odds of being the winning bid.

Closing Costs?  Probably Not This TimeImage title

Though many buyers need it or would only want to receive some funds to close, in a sellers market, the seller’s will more than likely move to an offer that's not requesting closing cost. In a seller’s market, there isn't much time to negotiate on the property much like when it's a buyers market. Offering just as much as you're willing to pay will improve your chances. Put your highest a best offer out there the first time.  It does not always matter to the seller if you are paying “all cash” or you are financed.  They get their money in the end and coming in low and asking for closing cost just because you are all cash does not mean they will pick you over a higher financed offer.  Some sellers are looking to close as soon as possible due to job transfers, probate, inheritance or possible foreclosure is looming over their heads. Some buyers request a closing date sixty days from offer due to numerous reasons. In case your offer looks good enough together with a faster closing, you can raise the likelihood of getting offer accepted.

Stop Talking So Much With The Seller!Image title

Communicate with your agent when viewing the property. Buyers shouldn't speak together with sellers about price when they go and view the property, the agent does this together with the listing agent.  However, I have seen many occasions where the buyer gets way too personal with the seller and turns the seller off.  "Who died in the home?"  "Why do you need to sell?"  " Did your husband leave you and the children?".  Yes this does happen and it turns the seller off and against you.   There is nothing more uncomfortable than to be in a home with the seller and a buyer and the seller is cornered into spilling their life story about how they can no longer afford the home that they were raising their children in.  

Allow your Realtor to speak for you.  They have the experience and knowledge of what to ask, what is appropriate and when to ask.  Allow them to speak on your behalf in a way that is appropriate and will get you closer to owning the home of your dreams while not offending the very people that you are trying to work with. 

Last ThoughtImage title

Sellers are connected to their homes and sometimes prefer selling their house to buyers who'll look after and love the home. These are some great starter tips to assist buyers in a seller’s market.

To see what is currently on the market in your neighborhood, just go to

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Darren Scott

Darren Scott/TheScott Group and his team of specialists with eXp Realty California, serves real estate buyers, sellers, and investors in Orange County. Probate & Trust Real Estate Specialists. We help....

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