A seller's market occurs when there are more buyers than there are homes for sale. As COVID-19 has impacted our daily sense of normal for the majority of this year, it's also created a seller's market. And as you might imagine, a lower inventory can make buying a home in a seller's market challenging. But it's not impossible! We're here to help you make the right moves so that you're not left out in the cold (figuratively, of course). Here's what you can do to make buying a home in a seller's market a lot easier.
Navigating a seller's market as a buyer is risky business on your own. Securing a sharp, experienced agent to be in your corner will alleviate much of that risk.
Pre-approval not only gives you the security to make a move fast – a must in a seller's market – but it also gives the seller confidence that you mean business. That goes a long way.
In a buyer-slanted market, it might be more attractive to offer something lower than the asking price and negotiate from there. But when the market favors the seller, you're much better off making your best offer up front. You don't want to invite competitive interest by submitting a lower offer.
Despite leading with your best offer, you still may need more to secure the purchase. Buying a home in a seller's market means other buyers will be in the hunt for the same home. Prepare with your agent to continue bidding if your first offer isn't enough.
Seller's markets require buyers to think fast and act even faster. Your favorite listing today could be off the market tomorrow. You should of course still do your due diligence; you want to be decisive but not reckless. If you fall in love with a home, don't be afraid to make a move.
Flexibility matters in a seller's market. For one, you can make your offer even more attractive by agreeing to terms that are convenient for the seller. Maybe there's a piece of furniture they don't want to take with them. Let them! It might be a bit more work for you after closing, but it might make closing the home that much easier. You have to be flexible with your own wants and needs, too. In a buyer's market, you might have more wiggle room to find a house that checks every box on your wish list. But buying a home in a seller's market could mean compromising on certain things. Maybe the style isn't quite what you love, or maybe the location is a little off from where you'd prefer. If these are must-haves, then by all means wait. But if you can determine those factors that aren't as important, you'll have a less stressful time.
After a job interview, you may send a personal handwritten note to your interviewer as a follow-up and reaffirmation of your interest. The same gesture can make a difference when buying a home in a seller's market. Let the seller know the home is as important to you as it is to them.