Insider Tips for Making An Offer On A House

making an offer on a house

If you are thinking about making an offer on a house, there are many aspects beyond price to consider in your offer. First of all, make sure you have hired the very best Sacramento Realtor you can find with decades of experience. An experienced Realtor is going to know the finite details and there are so many.

The price, of course, is very important. So many buyers only focus on the list price and it can be way under market or way overpriced. Our Code of Ethics suggest we do a comparative market analysis every time we write an offer. I certainly do. Not every agent specializes in listings nor have they listed hundreds properties, which makes pricing property a pure art form. So many aspects, I could write a short story just on pricing!

As the buyer, if you are obtaining a loan always make sure you have your loan letter is attached to your offer. Hopefully, you have been ran through lender automated direct underwriting. Additionally, as we are talking about attachments, have your proof of downpayment and closing costs in your name and dated in current month, always provide those to your agent.

Write a letter to the seller about why you love this home so much. Talk about celebrations you will have there and how much you love a few particular features. Don’t underestimate the power of letters. My own house had 10 offers and the seller chose an offer, due to a letter. And the seller was an agent, me.

The costs of sale in the purchase agreement are important. Always a good idea to split the costs or, in seller’s markets, pay entirely for title and escrow. The transfer taxes and home warranty can also be split 50/50. The natural disclosure company should always be noted, we use Property ID for $99. Try not to ask for personal property (lenders don’t like it) unless you expect, for example, that the washer and dryer will stay. Your good faith deposit is always important. In California, liquidated damages are 3%, so it is a good idea to have an earnest money deposit be less than 3% of the purchase price.

Time frames: always find out from the listing agent what the sellers need regarding closing date. If they want time in the house after closing, great, give them a week or two. This can win the offer for you. Schedule your close date at the first date the lender says they can close escrow. Shorten time for inspections and appraisal contingencies. In some instances, you can remove the appraisal contingency upfront.

Do not ask for repairs such as pest clearance or or roof repairs in your offer, which can sour the positive mood of the seller. You have an inspection time period to verify everything, so don’t ruin the day for yourself. Shorten the inspection and loan contingency dates as that will help instill seller confidence in your offer.

This does not mean you can’t ask for repairs, but it depends on what it is and how much. I usually suggest to clients that they do not ask for anything not related to safety items; for example, wiring splices and improper venting would qualify. Breakers that are not working correctly, also another safety item, a red flag. A closet door off the tracks, not so much.

There are many other items but these are a few important steps for your checklist when writing an offer on a house. Simply ask your Realtor to follow these guidelines and you will have a much better reception from the listing agent. If you want to win when you make an offer on a house, call Weintraub & Wallace Realtors today at 916-233-6957 We write offers to win!

— JaCi Wallace

Weintraub & Wallace

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