How to buy a home in a multiple offer situation

Fighting multiple offers on a house can be a nightmare for buyers: It basically means that you’ve found your dream home, but everyone else also wants it. Unless you go to the mat and really play your cards right, this place could easily slip through your fingers. That’s why it’s critical to put your best offer forward from the start. Here’s a guide on how to stand out amid multiple offers to increase the odds that you’ll end up on top.

Offer more money

It’s that simple: Money talks! Many agents even suggest including an escalation clause in which you agree to offer above the asking price (up to a limit, of course), if other bidders come into the picture.

However, the sale price isn’t the only place where you can make a strong financial showing. Consider increasing the amount of money that you’ll put into the escrow deposit. Committing more money will show the sellers that you’re serious about buying the property.

Write a letter

Beyond the basic agreement of sale paperwork, including a letter explaining why you’re so passionate about buying the home can help you stand out from the crowd.

Letters are especially effective in situations where the sellers have an emotional connection to the property. For example,  an elderly couple looking to downsize might be more inclined to choose a young couple who are looking to start a family.

Keep financing clean

Where financing is concerned, buying a property with cash is always attractive to sellers, if you can afford it. Since a mortgage lender won’t have to get involved, the sale process becomes much easier and there won’t be any worry that a loan won’t get approved at the last minute. That being said, cash certainly isn’t an option for every buyer. If a mortgage is a must, make sure that you provide a pre-approval, so that the sellers know a lender has already vetted your finances.

Andrew Sandholm, of the real estate company BOND New York, reminds buyers that providing either a pre-approval or proof of funds for a cash deal is a must. “Whether you are planning to take out a mortgage or pay all cash, you can stand out from other offers if you show you are a serious buyer by proving you have the funds to buy the home,” he explains.

Buy the home ‘as is’

Agreeing to buy the home “as is” essentially means that you are agreeing to purchase the home in its current condition and releasing the sellers from the responsibility of making any repairs. It’s a very attractive option from the sellers’ point of view because it increases their net profit.

Keep in mind that buying a home as is doesn’t mean that you have to forgo inspections entirely. It simply means that they will be for informational purposes only. You’d be entitled to elect any inspections you wish—and to walk away if major problems are uncovered. However, regardless of what the reports show, any repairs will be your responsibility.  (Most Real Estate Agents would not recommend this however, it is a good Tactic if you want to beat out the competing offers)

Article was on website with Kudos going to Tara Mastroeni Author.  Troy Krabbenhoft Tweaked this a bit for the Fargo Moorhead Area of Real Estate.