More than 4 million Americans buy a home each year, but there’s no telling how many offers are discarded along the way. And no one wants to get edged out in the bid for a dream home.
Real estate is rebounding in many regions of the country, and buyers can face formidable competition. Of course, the best way to snag the home you want is to promise the most money. But there’s more to making an offer than simply setting and stating your price.
Here, two top real estate agents in a perpetually competitive market — Washington, D.C. — share pointers on crafting an offer that will outshine the rest:
SHOW THEM THE MONEY
The key, both said, is assuaging the sellers’ fears. They worry mainly that the deal will fall through, so have your financing in order before you submit an offer. Make sure the lender checks your credit, assets and employment status before pre-approving your loan, and get a detailed letter with the amount you are authorized to borrow, recommends Elizabeth Blakeslee, a Coldwell Banker broker in the capital region.
Another way to signal you are a serious buyer is by putting down a large, good-faith deposit. A 2 percent to 4 percent escrow deposit is common. However, Nancy Itteilag of Long and Foster real estate, who has been listed among the top 10 agents in the country for sales volume by the Wall Street Journal/REAL Trends, tells her clients to write a check for at least 10 percent. Within 30 days, the buyer will need to hand over this money as part of the down-payment anyway.
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