If you’ve looked into buying a home lately, you know it’s a historically competitive market.
Cash offers, multiple bids and limited inventory can make buying seem daunting right now. But real estate professionals say there are things all buyers can do to remain competitive.
“You have a situation where you’ve got a bunch of buyers and money chasing very few houses,” said Martin Jones, a real estate investor and realtor with Re/Max Renaissance.
The pandemic-driven shift to telework and the push for more space has sent people into the homebuying market and supply hasn’t kept up. Low mortgage rates also mean cheaper home loans.
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Jones said buyers should expect every home on the market to have multiple offers including many all-cash, so potential buyers need to be ready to act quickly.
“Come into the market understanding that you need to give your highest and best and it will be a dog fight,” said Jones.
For buyers who can’t buy a home all-cash up front, Jones suggests getting creative in the terms of your individual offer beyond price, including removing inspection contingencies or an earlier closing date.
He also suggests considering adding escalation clauses to offers, agreeing to increase your offer to a point, should the seller receive a higher offer.
Longtime realtor Julie Corrado said the current market is like nothing she’s experienced in her career and understands the intimidation buyers are feeling. She now regularly sees homes with multiple offers.
“I’ve never been in a position in real estate where every time the question is how high do we need to go over the asking price to get this house?” she said.
To win the home you want, Corrado agreed that buyers need to submit offers with terms sellers will like.
“I have buyers all the time get houses where they’re not the highest offer, but their terms are the best. Using strong local lenders making sure they’ve really gone through your income and your assets and that really gives a confidence to the sellers and the listing agent that you’re fully qualified for the home."
Both Jones and Corrado said hey don’t anticipate the current real estate market to cool anytime soon. They expect this level of demand and low inventory could last into the end of 2021 or beyond.