You finally found it. Your dream home. You are ready to make an offer. What should you do to make your home offer stand out above the rest? You never know how many other offers you are competing against. If you are serious, your methods need to be serious. Below are 12 tips to make your offer to purchase irresistible.
Lake Geneva Real Estate Lawyer Lists Tips to Make Your Home Offer Stand Out
1. Make a Cash Offer. This tip is practically a given. All cash offers are normally accepted over mortgage offers. Why? The purchase is not contigent on approval of a mortgage. Therefore, there is less chance the purchase will fall through. The closing may occur faster as there may not be other requirements that take time, such as appraisals, surveys, and required inspections.
2. Obtain a Pre-Approval Letter. What’s a pre-approval letter? A pre-approval letter is a letter from a mortgage lender stating the buyer is able to obtain a loan. A pre-approval letter lets the seller know that there will be no issues obtaining a mortgage, thus decreasing the chances of the sale falling through due to mortgage issues. The bank has already stated to sellers in the letter that the buyer will be given the loan amount. A pre-approval letter also lets the seller know that a buyer is serious and has already gone through the “red tape” of acquiring a mortgage.
3. Become Pre-Qualified. Buyers should always get pre-approved for a mortgage if possible. However, if a buyer cannot get pre-approved, the next best thing is to get pre-qualified. This lets the seller know that a buyer meets the qualifications for a loan. It’s not as concrete as a pre-approval letter, but it’s better than nothing.
4. Call the Listing Agent. Your real estate agent should call the seller’s listing agent to find out more about the sellers. What is the seller looking for in an offer? Why are they selling the home? What timeframe is the seller looking for in respect to closing? Are there any offers on the home? What would be a deal breaker for the sellers? What is most important to the sellers in an offer? How flexible are the sellers in price?
5. Meet the Seller’s Timeframe. Most sellers wish to close within 30 days. Pleasing the seller with a quick closing date can seal the deal over a higher priced offer. The same can be said about a longer closing date. The sellers may need a longer timeframe until closing, such as 60 or 90 days. Meeting the closing timeframe needs of the seller could make or break a deal.
6. Make the Seller Like You. Let the seller know why you want to live in their house and neighborhood. A buyers’ story may resonate with the seller’s own personal circumstances. Maybe you are moving to be close to your grandchildren and the seller is moving for the same reason. The sharing of this personal experience may be enough for an offer to win over the rest. Buyers can provide personal information to the seller through a letter with photographs or a video. Sometimes, just expressing how much you will take the best care of a seller’s home is enough. People have emotional attachments to their homes. You need to be creative and be personal. Don’t underestimate this tactic. If other offers have been presented with buyer letters and one did not, guess whose offer is most likely getting rejected.
7. Put the Best Offer Forward. Be sure to submit the best competitive offer first. Buyers can gamble, but they’re gambling with the chances that the sellers will say, “no.”
8. Submit Non-contingent Offers. Many home offers are contingent upon numerous circumstances, such as: mortgage approval, appraisal, inspections, sale of current home, etc. If buyers can avoid contingencies, although not always recommended, their offer can stand out above the rest. This could mean paying cash and purchasing the home no matter the outcome of an inspection or appraisal. This gamble could pay off, but make sure the conditions are perfect. You could end up paying the difference between the appraisal price and the offer price out of your own pocket. You could also end up living in a “money pit.” It’s not always advisable to forego a home inspection.
As an alternative solution, buyers have the option of paying for an inspection and appraisal before submitting an offer. This is a risk, but it could work. Another option is to add an “as is” inspection contingency. This means a buyer can have an inspection performed, but the buyer will not ask the seller to pay for or perform any repairs before purchase. If any issues are found during the inspection, the buyer has the option to purchase the home “as is.”.
9. Don’t Submit a “Messy” Offer. Don’t ask for all the furniture and the boat in the yard, too. It would be great to keep all the patio furniture and have all the carpet stains removed, but are those deal breakers? Don’t ask the sellers to pay for all fees. Instead, offer to pay or split fees with the seller. Don’t ask to extend the closing date. Buyers should keep inline with seller’s timeframe. Keep it simple. Sellers have so much to worry about already. Too many conditions and nitpicks could cost buyers the home of their dreams.
10. Add an Escalation Clause. An escalation clause increases the purchase price of a home offer based upon another higher offer submitted during the review period. When a buyer submits a home offer to a seller, the seller has 48 hours to respond to the offer. If a higher offer is received during this timeframe, the escalation clause could make all the difference, especially if the buyer’s other details, contingencies and timeframe, are more inline with the seller’s needs. The escalation clause needs to include the price increment, the maximum price buyers are willing to pay for the home, and proof of the highest offer received. An example of an escalation clause is: “Purchase price to be increased by increments of $2,500 above any additonal offers received up to $450,000. Buyer’s purchase price increase is contingent upon receipt of a copy of highest offer submitted to seller.”
11. Double Your Earnest Money. A deposit, or earnest money, lets a seller know how serious of a buyer you are. Consider doubling the customary amount.
12. Offer Asking Price or Above. This is another simple, but realistic tip. If you match the sellers’ asking price or submit an offer above asking price, you are more likely to have your offer considered by the sellers. Obviously, only submit offers above and beyond asking price when the offer price is inline with market values. Buyers should submit a reasonable offer, yet still be aggressive with their offer price. Let’s face it, price is the most important factor to a home seller in most cases.
Standing out in a bidding war over the perfect home isn’t rocket science. A buyer’s best ally is an experienced real estate agent and skilled real estate lawyer. Getting solid, knowledgeable advice from real estate agents can be challenging for buyers. Buying and selling a home is an extremely emotional process.
Contact Our Lake Geneva Real Estate Lawyer
Wynn at Law, LLC is here to help with all your real estate needs. If you have any questions during the home buying or home selling process, please feel free to contact our real estate law office. If you are a real estate agent who needs real estate law assistance, Wynn at Law is here to help you, too. Real estate buyers, sellers, and agents can reach our Lake Geneva real estate law office by phone at 262-725-0175 or by email via “>our website’s contact page. Wynn at Law has real estate law offices conveniently located in Salem, Muskego, Delavan, and Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.
*The content and material on this web page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.