It is not a great time to be a buyer in this market. It seems like every good quality home that comes on market has multiple offers on it right away and is already contingent. There is no doubt about it, this is a challenging time to be a buyer, especially in the Flathead Valley. With little less than 3 months of supply in the market and decreasing supply coming on market, there are currently no signs that the rough storm being felt by buyers is going to dissipate anytime soon. Einstein said it best,
“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein
So, if you want to succeed then you are going to have to change it up and employ a different strategy if you want to be successful. That is why I put together this tip sheet for buyers to help give you a few more tools in your toolkit to be successful in a seller dominated market. Here are my top five tips for buyers to succeed in a seller’s market.
- Wait it out
Wait, what? Are you, a person who gets paid by people buying and selling real estate, telling me to not buy a house? Yup, I am. I get it, sitting on the sidelines sucks, but if the market is too hot to allow you to comfortably purchase the home that you can afford, do you really want to be buying something you’re not satisfied with? If the quality of homes that you’re looking at is dropping, the prices are increasing, and the stress is mounting, these all may be tell-tale signs that you need to pause the search and evaluate going ahead and buying right now. This is may come off a little more Sun Tzu, but sometimes the best battle is the one that you do not fight.
If you cannot find the home that you want at what you can afford, do not settle.
That will never work out well for you and you will end up feeling stressed, dissatisfied, and unhappy in your home!
- Rapid fire your offers
In a seller’s market, the sellers have the power and you do not, but that does not mean that you still can’t win. However, to be successful you better prepare yourself to start putting pen to paper faster than you were the nights before your high school term papers were due. To get a home you’re going to have to not only be fast but you have to follow that up with massive action quickly. If the house you’re looking at checks most of the boxes, have your agent write up the offer on the spot, do not delay in signing it, and make sure that your agent sends it off immediately. And, if there are a few more possibilities that you see that day while looking, write an offer up and send those off too.
If you are writing just one offer a time you are going to severely reduce your chance for success.
Apply the Grant Cardone method and hit it with a 10X, ten times the amount of effort you were using to yield the same result that you originally intended.
- Lead with your best foot
In a “normal” marketplace buyers can expect to have a counteroffer to their offer by the seller and negotiate some of the terms to get the most favorable deal. Unfortunately, in a seller’s market, most sellers are going to have multiple offers on the table and will be able to pick the best from multiple offers and discard the rest.
Don’t miss out on the home that would be a great opportunity for you over trying to save a few bucks.
You got to ask yourself how badly you want this house, and if you want it badly, are you willing to lose it over a few thousand dollars (which I am not saying is not a lot of money) in the grand scheme of things?
- Have your ducks lined up in a row
Don’t be strolling through homes (and you’re agent really shouldn’t be either) without a prequalification letter in pocket.
It is imperative that you have not only spoken with a lender, but lined your financing up, know exactly how much you can comfortably afford, and have a prequalification letter from them.
You should also have your earnest money deposit set aside and ready to deposit when your offer is accepted. You need to be ready to buy a home on the spot at any moment, because if you are not, there are definitely a whole handful of buyers outside the house ready to do so. Don’t find the dream home and miss out because you were not ready to roll.
- Have your agent sell you as more than offer, but a person
Sometimes agents and even sellers get a little jaded with the process and lose sight of what is really taking place. They are passing their home onto you and you are moving into their home, where their memories have been made for years.
Write an offer cover letter and give it to your agent to present to the seller’s agent when your offer is submitted.
Sometimes that personal touch or appeal will connect with a seller, because at the end of it all they are passing their home onto you to make memories in, and that means something.
Most importantly, don’t lose hope. Everything is a process and if it is meant to be, then it shall be. Trust in the process, find a motivated and hard working agent, and keep after it. You shall prevail. And if it is not meant to be, then it is not meant to be. The right house will reveal itself to you in time, just don’t miss out because you weren’t ready to pounce on it!