It is springtime! The birds are chirping, the sun is bright, and the silkworms have taken over Charlotte. This means that real estate is booming and houses are flying off the shelves. The fact that it is spring isn’t the only reason that houses are selling quick. Charlotte is actually in the middle of a seller’s market. As a home buyer in this type of market, the process can be frustrating and overwhelming. I’ve come up with a few tips that can help buyers survive the sellers market and find the home of your dreams.
- Get pre-approved – A pre-qualified buyer is a good buyer but a pre-approved buyer is even better. A pre-qualification is not a fully documented approval. Talk to a loan officer about how to get pre-approved. You will need all of your required documents (paystubs, W2s, tax returns, and bank statements). This will prepare any buyer in a sellers market before you start searching for a home. It also makes your offer look better than other buyers who are submitting an offer with just a pre-qualification.
- Don’t waste time in a sellers market – Houses are going under contract within 2 days of listing. Once you start searching for a home do not waste time looking at homes that you would never consider buying. This is not the time to window shop. Once you find the house you like, don’t waste time debating on whether it’s the one. Your gut will tell you it’s the one. If you wait too long the next buyer will already have it.
- Make the best offer- The best offer is not always the highest offer in a sellers market. Before making the offer consider which contingencies you really need. Do you really need a three week inspection period? Do you really need seller’s help with the closing costs? Are you able to afford your own home warranty? Think about what other buyers may be offering and how your offer will match up to theirs. Think about your offer from the seller’s perspective as well. Of course they want to sell their home but they do not want to give it away for little to nothing.
- Over offer – Offer the seller something that they cannot refuse. In multiple offer situations over-offering may help. You can offer over the original asking price or you can offer the seller an option they can’t refuse. For instance, let the seller know that you are willing to pay the full year taxes at closing. Another great perk for sellers would be telling the seller that you can cover the repair costs after the inspection is complete.
For buyers in a sellers market, the key here is to eliminate competition. Once you find the home that you would like to buy you should have no worries about someone else getting it before you if you follow these tips.