buying a home with multiple offers
What do you do when the home of your dreams comes on the market on Friday morning, and the seller has an Open House scheduled for Sunday? This situation tends to freak out home buyers in Sacramento because they worry that some other buyer will come through that open house and snatch away their dream home. It’s a valid concern. In this seller’s market of limited inventory and high demand, it’s very common for a seller to receive multiple offers. So, what do you do? How do you get that edge that you so desperately want and deserve?
First, let me suggest what you should not do. You know the seller will probably receive multiple offers. Don’t write an offer on Friday morning that gives the seller until Friday night to accept because that plan can backfire. Sellers don’t want to be pushed and pressured. Sellers want the highest price from the most qualified buyer and, think about it, if you were in the sellers’ shoes, you’d want the same thing. Nobody likes to be bullied. If you write an offer with a short window for acceptance before that offer expires, it is very possible that your offer will expire. Not a good strategy, in most cases.
If I were a home buyer in this kind of market where multiple offers is the norm and I needed to stand out from the crowd, the first thing I would do is bake a bunch of homemade brownies, maybe a cake, and bring it along when I toured with my buyer’s agent. When I spotted a home that I wanted, I’d leave the delicious baked item on the counter with a very nice handwritten note to the seller, explaining in no uncertain terms how much I loved the home and would give my eyeteeth to own it, and how much I truly appreciated their generosity in letting me view it. You can never go wrong being polite and showing that consideration.
The second thing I would do is ask my agent to write me the cleanest offer possible. That means include an earnest money deposit of whopping, mind-blowing proportions, coupled with a strong preapproval letter from a local lender with today’s date. I’d probably also include a bank statement as my proof of funds. I’d offer to pay all of the seller’s closing costs, except commission. I’d let the seller choose title and escrow. And I’d probably include some type of angle for bridging the gap if the appraised value does not meet the sales price.
In short, I would do everything possible to make the seller feel all warm and fuzzy toward me. I’d get that offer into the seller’s hands as quickly as possible, giving the seller at least through Monday to make a decision. Now, who do you think is likely to be on that seller’s mind on Friday, again on Saturday and all through Sunday? Who is the seller likely to gravitate toward when the other offers begin to arrive? Who will be first and foremost, lingering with affection in the seller’s mind? I’m betting it would be YOU!
If you’re looking for a Sacramento REALTOR, give Elizabeth Weintraub a jingle at 916.233.6759.