Nov 23, 2012
Q: How can a first-time home buyer compete in a multiple-offer environment?
A: First-time buyers should sign up with an experienced agent well before making an offer. A multiple offer situation clearly calls for the knowledge and skills of an experienced realtor.
Be first. The first offer has unofficial “first-dibs” rights. They are not legal or written, but most sellers still grant an extra bit of weight to the first buyers who step up to the plate and make an offer. Your agent should make the offer immediately by phone, text or email, and in writing on a purchase agreement form as soon as possible.
Include with your written offer a scanned copy of the 1 percent “earnest money” check to your agent’s escrow account. Also, include a pre-approval letter from a reputable mortgage broker or lender. You should have this ready to go before you go house-hunting.
A cash offer with no contingencies will trump any other offers burdened with contingencies.
If a first-time buyer wants a house very badly, they should make their highest and best offer right away. A full-price offer, or better, is always a good strategy. If the listing agent has priced below the market to generate activity, the winning bidder often bids above the asking price.
— Ken Delmar, Director, Delmar Group at Keller Williams, 203-253-0711, email@example.com