In this tough market, 3 real estate pros dish on how to get the house you want | Ezine Daddy

How to make an offer that a home seller will find difficult to refuse.

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As demand continues to outweigh the number of homes for sale in the United States, a supply that stands out from the competition can make the difference in getting — or losing — the home you want. (You can see the lowest mortgage rates you can get right now here.) Here’s what the pros told us about getting the home you want despite the competition.

Show them the money one way or another

This probably comes as no surprise, but money talks, and there are a number of ways to make it talk. Of course, the most obvious is to bid too much, and even a few thousand dollars can mean the difference between winning a home and losing it. Comps and advice from your real estate agent and their relationship with the seller’s agent can help you determine how much to charge — though sometimes it’s really just instinctive. “However, remember that anything you offer beyond the appraised home value and your loan amount is your responsibility,” says Lexie Holbert,’s real estate and lifestyle expert.

Other option? “Increase your down payment (the down payment when you make an offer) from the usual 1% to 10-20% to show the seller you mean business,” says Holbert. Or, if you had the money, you could make a cash offer that would lure the seller into a quicker deal.

Consider all the factors a seller might be thinking about

“Sellers often review multiple offers in a spreadsheet and compare all the offers received. You want to strategically position your listing so that it looks better in each category,” says Justin Feil, real estate agent at The Feil Group. Aside from the asking amount, these charts will likely state the duration of the escrow and any leaseback periods or contingencies (so a buyer can’t post much for their security deposit until their current home is put into escrow). Think about what the seller really wants, and “work within your budget and create the absolute strongest version of an offer within those criteria,” he says.

Get a pre-approval letter specific to the home you want to buy

Sellers want to make sure the sale closes at the end of the day. That’s why getting a letter of pre-approval from the mortgage lender is crucial during these trying times. “In addition to obtaining a pre-approval letter before you start your home purchase, ask your lender to prepare a letter that is specific to the home you are bidding on,” says Holbert. Feil notes that this process can often take 45 to 60 days, but says, “It can provide a significant strategic advantage because you can potentially eliminate your credit contingencies, making your offer much more attractive to a seller.”

You can see the lowest mortgage rates you can get right now here.

Modify or cancel contingencies

From a home viewing case to an appraisal case to a mortgage case, Taylor Simon, a luxury real estate broker at Aaron Kirman Group in Los Angeles says, “Sellers want to close fast, so … keep your contingencies as brief as possible.” Because contingencies are a buyer’s When offering an opportunity to withdraw from a deal, keeping it to a minimum can help reassure the seller. And Feil says, “If you can’t eliminate a particular emergency, see if there’s a way to aggressively shorten the emergency schedule while remaining protected from financial risk.”

Be flexible in terms of time

Agree on a closing date that suits the needs of the seller. “After you close, they may want to stay in the house for a few days or buy it back where they rented for a period of time,” says Holbert.

Consider adding an escalation clause

Some agents don’t like that because the strategy is often abused, but adding an escalation clause shows you’re willing to do whatever it takes to get the house. “An escalation clause essentially states that you are willing to pay X amount above the highest price. You can also limit this and require that you be shown proof of the highest bid before proceeding,” says Simon.

make it personal

People often love their home and want to sell it to someone who loves it too. Consider writing a personal note introducing yourself and explaining what you love about your home. You can even add a photo of your family or send flowers to the sellers to show them you’re serious about the deal.

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