Insider tips from Megan Luther and Parnell Quinn about how to get your offer noticed in a market that is full of eager buyers.
The real estate market saw a lot of momentum in 2020 and is expected to continue this trend in 2021. Grand County and the greater Denver Metro Area are experiencing a large influx of buyers entering the market, driving the demand up. There hasn’t been that same increase in houses for sale, causing the real estate industry to become a seller’s market. Megan says, “… it will be a seller’s market for a while because of the lack of inventory, and with COVID-19 we’re seeing more people trying to move up to the mountains,” which means right now and for the foreseeable future, it is important to put your best offer forward when trying to purchase a home. Here are Megan and Parnell’s insider tips for writing a great offer that will get noticed.
A Preapproval Letter is a MUST
If your offer can’t be all cash, it’s important to be pre-qualified and approved for a loan before submitting an offer. A preapproval letter lets the Seller know that you are qualified and a serious Buyer that is prepared to purchase now. Parnell says this is a non-negotiable item to include with your offer if you want the Seller to take your offer seriously. Without a preapproval letter, your offer is at a huge disadvantage. If there is a higher offer submitted without a preapproval letter, the offer you submitted is more likely to be considered.
Keep Your Offer Simple
There are a handful of ways to simplify your offer.
- Waiving contingencies for items such as loan, appraisal, or inspection can make your offer more appealing to the Seller, but it does come with some risks. Megan advises buyers speak to their legal advisor or real estate agent before making this decision.
- Offer to shorten the inspection period or get rid of it altogether. If the inspection can be completed sooner, any objections can be addressed more timely and if a resolution can’t be agreed upon the deal can terminate, allowing the Seller to put it back on the market as soon as possible. If the Buyer is comfortable removing the inspection contingency entirely the Seller has one less thing to worry about as an “out” or renegotiation point.
- Offer to put more cash down for earnest money and show that you can cover any appraisal gap with that extra cash, if you’re getting a loan.
Dress (Your Offer) to Impress
It’s important to structure your offer so that there are fewer places the Seller may want to counteroffer. “We often get compliments on our offers as we take into consideration any particular needs of the Seller and send over ‘clean’ offers,” says Parnell. Doing your due diligence beforehand can definitely factor in the Buyer’s favor. Megan mentions that it’s important to consider covering the “little boxes” such as the Owners Extended Coverage (OEC) or the closing services fee from the title company. There are a lot of simple ways to make the transaction easier for the Seller and ultimately push your offer to the front of the line. This will give you the upper hand over the Buyers who are submitting offers in which the main terms match your offer, however, they’ve asked the Seller to cover or split miscellaneous fees. In a market with so many qualified Buyers it’s important to write your best offer the first time. Megan also encourages Buyers to write an impressive cover letter that highlights the best parts of your offer. Take out the guesswork. Giving the Sellers a list of the major points in layman’s terms can help get your offer noticed and put you in a better position.
Hire a Professional Real Estate Agent
It’s always a good idea to have someone that is knowledgeable in the industry assist with real estate transactions. This will take some of the weight off of your shoulders and give you insider access to new properties that hit the market. Hiring an agent who constantly watches the marketplace and can network with other agents in the area gives you the best chance of finding the right property faster and getting top consideration for your offer.
Be Willing to Be Flexible
The last tip Megan and Parnell shared is to be flexible. Especially in Grand County where Sellers are a mix of second homeowners and locals, it’s important to be willing to change parts of your offer to appeal to the Seller. This could mean offering to close quickly, which could be more important to a Seller than a higher offer, or offering to delay possession after Closing to give the Seller more time to move out of their primary residence (and not have to move in winter).
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