Getting your offer accepted

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Buying a home is no small feat. 

It takes months of searching, scheduling and compromising to even find “the one”. 

But how do you make sure you are the one who ends up with your dream home in the end? It’s one of the toughest topics that buyers and their real estate agents have to work through. It depends on many factors, and can be heavily influenced by how the two parties perceive each other. 

This might be a tough conversation to have with you, but it is the truth we have discovered since we started working with clients, and we figure you deserve the truth. 

Offer Price

Low-ball offers are often insulting to the Sellers; make sure you don’t want the house that badly. The seller most likely will not even respond. 

This is one of the hallmarks of an honest real estate agent. Telling a buyer client that their offer is not strong enough is not something every agent is comfortable with. When it is time to write the offer on the home you want badly, we try to see the other side of things, from the seller’s perspective. Your chances of getting an accepted offer goes down if the seller gets insulted, which we try to avoid. If the neighborhood you are looking at typically has homes sell for 97% of list price, that’s probably the price it will sell at, even if it doesn’t end up being you who buys it. 

 If you love the home and can’t see yourself living anywhere else, “lowballing” or “seeing what we can get” usually ends in a game of chance with a disappointed buyer. You want to buy it, and they want to sell it, keep that in mind. Seller’s also do research when selling a home, and 9/10 times it is priced according to the market, or slightly above. This is an emotional time for both parties, and the last thing we want to do is make it even more stressful by insulting someone we want to do business with. 

Inspection Period 

Another thing that comes up during the initial phase of a new contract, is the inspection period. This is where things can get even more personal. You as a buyer want to make sure that the house you are about to buy is in good shape, and the seller wants to spend as little money as possible fixing a home that they are not going to be living in anymore. This naturally causes problems and being empathetic to the other party will go a long way here as well. 

The inspection report is supposed to be thorough. That’s what you are paying your inspector to do, right? But keep in mind, it’s important to prioritize what items need to be repaired/remedied. What we suggest you keep in mind during the inspection period is that structural and functional items should come first, cosmetic items second. 

If the dishwasher doesn’t work, ask them to fix it before closing. If the paint isn’t your style, that is not something we would recommend requesting sellers to fix. It might seem petty to the sellers, our goal is to not make them more difficult to negotiate with. At the very least, if they wont give you any repairs, most sellers will agree to give you credit at closing, or lower the home purchase price to try and compromise. 

The thing is, most people are willing to compromise! If you come into the offer writing process with a “win at all costs attitude” or aren’t willing to make any concessions, then you may miss out on the house you want. We’ve even seen sellers take lower offers because they just didn’t want to deal with the buyers after they have low-balled them. It really happens!

The home-buying process does not need to be contentious, but we’ve seen it happen to many of our colleagues. Stick to a reasonable market price range, and don’t push for things that the sellers have made it clear that they don’t want to compromise on. 

A good Realtor will always check with the sellers to see what terms and conditions would make the offer more agreeable to the Sellers. Closing date, earnest money deposit and more are great ways to show the sellers we care about their interests too. Extending that olive branch is a great first step to getting buyers the home they want. Remember, people buy and sell based on emotions first.

Eric Gross

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