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5 Tips For Buying a House in a Tight Market

by Beth Jaworski

You have probably read the headlines (and seen the Facebook & Twitter posts) so you already know that there are not a lot of homes for sale right now. At least not enough to keep up with current buyer demand. If you are considering selling your home, this is great news. If you want to buy a property right now, it is a little more troubling. Many buyers are currently getting a rude education through painful experience on how quickly the market can flip from a buyer's market to a seller's market. To ensure that you endure the least amount of pain possible, while successfully purchasing your new property in the current market, follow these 5 tips:

1.) Find the best buyer's agent for you. Notice I say for you. Interview more than one agent and find the one you feel most comfortable with. You want someone who knows the market where you will be buying, who will be honest with you and who has a good reputation among fellow agents. You also want an agent experienced in multiple offer situations and who will communicate with you in the method you prefer (text, email and/or phone). Lastly, they need to have a system in place to get you into new listings ASAP.

2.) Get a written pre-approval letter for the highest amount possible. Many lenders (and some agents) will tell you to get your pre-approval letter tailored to the property you want to purchase. Some loan officers do not even want to even put a dollar amount in your pre-approval letter and will just state that you are pre-approved to purchase that address. They will tell you this is for your benefit, but don't believe them! When multiple offers come in, they are often astoundingly similar. Sometimes the one thing that is different is that the first buyer  is pre-approved for a lot more than they will be borrowing & the other is only pre-approved for the amount they will need to borrow to buy the house. Guess which buyer gets the accepted offer?

3.) Drop everything to get to that new listing! This cannot be stressed enough. It will not always work, but sometimes simply being the first one in and the first one to submit an offer is what gets you the house. The minute you know there is a new listing you are interested in, you should schedule a showing with your agent.

4.) Make your offer as clean as possible. This is not the time to make the offer contingent on every test possible, nor is it the time to ask for closing cost credits or appliances the seller has not listed as included. For example, radon testing is a common contingency in my area, but not all buyers include one in their offer. To remedy high levels of radon, a mitigation system can be installed, usually for around $850. As a result, we see many buyers leaving this contingency out of their offer in a tight market, in hopes of gaining an advantage over any possible competing offers. (Of course the buyer then budgets $1,000 for radon testing and possible needed mitigation after closing).

5.) Put down as much earnest money as possible with the offer. We have all heard the expression, money talks. Sometimes it does! If you want it to speak for you, write a big earnest money check with your offer. Again, often competing offers are very similar and can be for the exact same price you offered. You don't want the only difference to be that the other buyer put down a nice earnest money deposit with their offer, and you did not. 

A great agent will have even more "tips and tricks" to get you the home you want. Please contact me if you would like to find out more. I love a challenge and have a great track record in multiple offer situations!

Why Work with an Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR)?

by Beth Jaworski

Getting into the home of your dreams can be a challenge. Whether this is your first home purchase or your fifth, ensure a smooth home-buying process by working with an Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR).  An ABR has specialized knowledge and experience to make sure your home buying process is straightforward and successful.

The ABR designation is awarded by the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR).  To learn more about the council, please visit www.REBAC.net

It is important to know that the ABR designation is only awarded to licensed real estate professionals after they complete specialized training and demonstrate experience working with buyers.  The training helps the agent to better understand the buyer’s perspective, along with how to effectively represent the buyer-client.   

Working with an ABR means your agent has chosen to go above and beyond the normal license requirements and that you will be well represented in your purchase. 

All agents who work with a buyer should do the following:

  • Ask questions to help understand your specific needs and wants from a home.
  • Help you determine how much you can afford, and assist you in getting pre-approved for a mortgage.
  • Preview properties for you, and accompany you to viewings/showings, even open houses.
  • Provide a list of qualified service providers, including home inspectors, attorneys, mortgage lenders, radon test operators, etc.
  • Concentrate on the details of the process and keep accurate records so you can focus on and enjoy your new home.

 An ABR will do even more however, including the following:

  • Help you establish the market value of the home you are interested in purchasing, by doing a comprehensive market analysis for you.
  • Help you to estimate the costs of improvements, changes, or needed repairs and/or updates.
  • Advise you in creating/making an offer on a home, along with mapping out a negotiation strategy.
  • Put your interests first throughout the process.
  • Give you advice, counsel and their professional opinion.

If you are looking to purchase a home, make sure you seek an agent with the ABR designation to help make your home-buying process easy and successful.  If you have any other questions about how an ABR designated agent can help you get in to your home, email me or call me today!

 

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Contact Information

Photo of Beth Jaworski Real Estate
Beth Jaworski
Shorewest Realtors
11622 W. North Avenue
Wauwatosa WI 53226
Direct: 414.844.1118
Cell: 414.520.8555
Fax: 262.782.1551

I hope that this website was able to assist in your search for a home, or in your quest for information about buying or selling a home.  Please do not hesitate to contact Beth Jaworski of Shorewest Realtors with any questions. Email is sold@bethjaworski.com  and cell number is (414) 520-8555. Thanks!