By KYLE BLEVINS | Special to the Palisadian-Post
If throughout safer at home orders you’ve started to put a lot more value into more space, a home office and a nice yard, then you certainly are not alone.
The Palisades real estate market is hot—plain and simple. This is a very exciting time to own real estate. Buyers are locking in rates under 3% for 30-year fixed mortgages, something we’ve never seen in the U.S.
With interest rates at all-time lows, demand is very high, and homes are selling over asking price with multiple offers every day. You may be very eager to get into your future dream home, however, there are a few things you should know when getting into an active real estate market.
If you are already writing offers on homes, there is a very good chance that you’ve encountered a multiple-offer situation. You may have even missed out on a home that you thought was perfect for you and your family.
For anyone out there who is considering purchasing a home at this time, here are three tips to make your offer stand out above the competition.
1. Write a clean offer: To make your offer stand out above the rest, you want to present the cleanest offer possible. To keep it short, there are three main contingencies typically in place in a standard purchase agreement.
You have your inspection contingency, appraisal contingency and loan contingency. Should you not be able to perform and execute the contract, these contingencies are in place to protect the buyer and their earnest money deposit. Essentially, they allow you to back out of your purchase agreement should something go sideways.
When in multiple offers, the quickest way to stand out is to write in as few contingencies in your offer as possible. Sellers want to know that you are going to close escrow.
With fewer contingencies, there is a larger incentive for you to close escrow because you wouldn’t risk forfeiting your deposit. This is why cash offers are so strong and preferred by sellers.
If you are paying cash, you don’t need an appraisal contingency or loan contingency. If there are two equal offers, and one offer is all cash and the second buyers are taking out a loan, sellers will take the all-cash offer 10 out of 10 times. Oftentimes, a seller will take an all-cash offer of lesser value with more favorable terms.
If you are not in a position to pay all cash, then consider writing offers with no appraisal or loan contingency. If you have to write in a contingency, make the time frame as short as you’re able to.
2. Presentation is important: We all know a first impression is very important. This holds true when presenting an offer to a seller.
I encourage each of my clients to put together a cover letter to include with their offer. In the cover letter, introduce yourselves, explain why you are looking for a home and tell the seller why their home is the one. You want to make this personal.
Pro tip, include photos. It is very easy for a seller to go directly to the numbers and terms, looking only at the contracts. Having photos helps the seller recognize a person or family on the other side and they are able to visualize who they would be selling their home to.
I’ve even had clients put together a family video explaining each of these things.
One particular client had their daughter create a home movie. Every family member introduced themselves and went into explaining why they really love the seller’s home and how happy it would make them if their offer was accepted. It became a fun family project for my clients, the video turned out great and their offer was selected.
At the final walkthrough, the sellers admitted to my clients, the only reason they accepted their offer over the other choices was because of the video we submitted. Based on the video, they knew that my clients were going to take amazing care of their home.
In addition to your cover letter, include your proof of funds. Make sure your name is visible on the proof of funds you provide.
Finally, include a pre-approval letter from your lender if applicable. A nice touch can be having your loan officer reaching out directly to the listing agent to vouch for your ability to receive financing and close.
When submitting your offer, make sure your agent submits with a clear outline of the price and terms you are offering.
3. Be easy to work with: As a final tip, be as easy and enjoyable to work with as possible. I cannot emphasize this enough. People want to work with other people they like.
Respond promptly and avoid being argumentative. Sellers and listing agents take into account their experience with you.
If they feel like you could be a difficult buyer to work with, they may choose to go in another direction. The way you conduct yourself to the listing agent when you meet can affect the outcome of your offer no matter how good your price and terms may be.
Take the time and energy to be helpful and responsive. I promise this will have a positive impact on your home buying experience.
Kyle Blevins is a sales partner with Amalfi Estates in Pacific Palisades. He strives to help his clients achieve each and every one of their unique goals. Every person’s real estate goals are different and no two transactions are the same. With this in mind, he creates a tailored plan and strategy catered to each individual and homeowner. He prides himself on nurturing lasting relationships with his clients that extend far beyond the sale or purchase of any home. Contact Kyle for any of your real estate needs at 323-803-8455 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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