5 Tips for Home Buyers in a Seller's Market
Published on 2/28/2020
Just because it’s a sellers market doesn’t mean buyers can’t get their dream home. It may just take a mix of pre-planning, patience and timing.
Here are few ways buyers can fast track their way into a new home:
1. Have your own real estate agent
It may be tempting to think you get a better deal working with the listing agent. That’s not necessarily true. Neutrality among listing agents means they can’t help one side over the other. So who is there to help you?
2. Set a realistic budget
When you set a budget, make sure you include more expenses than just the monthly mortgage payment, down payment and closing costs. Have you planned for utilities, insurance, Homeowner Association fees, lawn care, pest control and more? Can you still fund your emergency savings fund, college for the kids and retirement?
3. Figure out what you want vs. need
Do you want to be in a specific school district? Do you need a big backyard? It may mean compromising on other home wants such as hardwood floors or stainless steel appliances, which could be addressed later. What are you willing to compromise? Having a clear idea will help in the home buying process.
4. Get pre-approved
Want to show sellers you are a serious, qualified buyer? Take the extra step to be pre-approved. A pre-approval letter shows a buyer’s creditworthiness and ability to get a loan by the lender. But don’t stop there. Once approved, buyers should shop around to find the best deal from lenders. Don’t be afraid to review the different offers and negotiate with lenders to get the one that works with your budget.
5. Make a fair bid
When there is a shortage of inventory, don’t miss out on your dream home because you failed to make a strong opening offer. If you find a home you love in the right location and price range, don’t wait to make an offer or try to lowball sellers. Buyers should be ready to submit a fair offer quickly, or they may risk missing out on the home altogether.