You’re getting ready to enter the real estate market, whether you’re looking for your first home, upgrading from a starter home, or downsizing for retirement. House searching in a seller’s market is not for the faint of heart, even if buying a home is frequently a difficult process.
The housing market has reopened with energy, and with prices in most cities returning to all-time highs, house buyers are faced with high demand, fierce competition, and frustratingly limited options, despite tools like virtual real estate viewings at their disposal. While some may be cursing themselves for sitting on the sidelines last year, others may be tempted to spend too much before prices rise.
Multiple offers may rush in on houses that have just been posted for a few hours in a hot real estate market. It might be difficult to compete with purchasers who make cash offers over the advertised price without ever seeing the property on the market. While waiting until the market calms down may be a smart idea in certain cases, there are important steps you can take to increase your chances of getting the property you want while sellers have the upper hand. Let’s take a look at what you can do to prepare yourselves.
1. Find a Good Real Estate Agent
First things first – you need to find a good real estate agent who can take you through the buying process. If you’re not doing this for the first time, doesn’t matter; there’s a lot that can change in the real estate market over a period of time and a good agent can keep you well informed, especially if it’s a hot market. You want someone who will notify you of new listings as soon as they become available, if not sooner. A skilled agent will also know how to make your bid stand out from the crowd.
2. Take a Stroll
Before you get serious, spend some time looking at what’s available. On the weekend, take a stroll through possible new areas and check your favourite real estate website for fresh listings. Keep track of how long properties are on the market until a deal is signed. (It won’t take long in a really hot market.) You can also check out properties via virtual site visits and also might want to check recently sold listings online to get an idea of how much properties are selling in comparison to their listed pricing. The goal is to obtain a sense of how hot the market is in your area without feeling obligated to make an offer. You’ll also have a better understanding of the kind of houses and areas you want (or don’t), as well as the amenities that are important to you.
3. Expect to Compromise
In a hot market, waiting for “the one” may not be an option. It could be a better idea to approach house purchasing by considering how you could make a ‘good enough’ homework. In a hot real estate market, having flexible expectations might give you more alternatives. If there aren’t many homes that meet your requirements, you may need to compromise on certain elements. Consider what’s most essential to you right now, as well as your future goals if you consider this as a potential lifelong home. Perhaps a third bedroom may serve as a home office for the time being, and then a nursery after you have a child.
4. Have Your Financing in Place
Get mortgage pre-approved from two or three lenders after comparing mortgage interest rates from various lenders. A pre-approval shows sellers that you’re serious in any hot market. However, if you want to see a house in person during the period, your agent may need to confirm that you’re pre-approved, either because sellers are expecting a lot of offers or because they just don’t want strangers in their houses.
5. Put in a Strong, Clean Offer
Your realtor would most likely advise you to make an offer on a well-priced house in a hot market for the entire asking price (or close to it). In certain situations, they may even advise bidding rather than asking. There’s no question that the biggest bid will pique a seller’s curiosity the most. Solid proposals with minimal seller conditions or requests, on the other hand, may be noticed and win the bid. To demonstrate your sincerity about the acquisition, you might put down extra earnest money or guarantee the home’s sale for a certain amount above its assessment.
These 5 tips will help you prepare yourself for a ride in a hot real estate market. Meanwhile, you can also attend virtual real estate visits which will help you to gain an insight into how things actually work as well as the market conditions at the time so that you can make an informed decision.
All the best!